Lead Investigator

Dr. Hal Siden

Co-Investigators and Collaborators

Dr. Stephanie Glegg, Dr. Tim Oberlander, Dr. Caroline Sanders, Laesa Kim, Gail Andrews, Dr. Sharon Hou

About the Project

Children born with severe brain-based developmental disabilities frequently experience persistent unexplained periods of pain and irritability, often compounded by a limited capacity to communicate their distress. We call this phenomenon Pain and Irritability of Unknown Origin (PIUO). Informed by our clinical and research experience, we have designed a systematic approach, called the PIUO Pathway, to address the management of these children’s pain and irritability with the goals of reducing pain symptoms, improving the day-to-day lives of the child and family, and simplifying treatment options for clinicians. In this study we evaluate the effectiveness of an integrated clinical pathway (i.e. a sequential order of standardized evaluation steps) for managing unexplained pain and irritability in children with complex conditions and limited communication. If the PIUO Pathway proves to be useful in addressing PIUO in children with SNI, the results will create the first-ever systematized practice guideline to treating pain in this population based on a solid evidence base. Such guidelines will streamline pain management for some of the most vulnerable children seen in clinics.

To learn more about this research visit paindetectives.org or contact Research Coordinator, Anne-Mette Hermansen.