Chronic Pain Management

It’s never easy to watch your child in pain — and it can be especially difficult if they have chronic (long-lasting) pain.

If your child has chronic pain, know that you are not alone. Many children and families are affected by it, and it can have a significant impact on their lifestyle and overall well being.

At Children’s Hospital & Medical Center, we’re here to help ease pain and improve everyday quality of life for your child and your family.

Make An Appointment

Make An Appointment

Phone 402-955-7170 | Fax 402-955-4184

What Sets Children’s Apart?

Here at Children’s, chronic pain patients are in good hands:

  • As the only chronic pain management program in Nebraska dedicated solely to pediatrics, we are the region’s experts in treating children and understanding their unique needs.
  • Children’s has been recognized nationally for excellence in care, safety, and innovations in healthcare technology.
  • We offer virtual visits — including follow-up, medication management appointments, and therapy — so that your child can manage chronic pain from the comfort, safety, and convenience of home.

Treating Chronic Pain

In some cases, chronic pain can come from another condition, such as arthritis or cancer, or it can be a lingering effect after an injury or infection. In other cases, the cause may be unknown. Pain comes in many shapes and sizes — it can be sharp or dull, in one location or throughout the entire body, and range from mild to severe.

Since pain is different for every child, there is no one-size-fits-all approach to treatment. Treatment is based on the cause, type, and severity of your child’s pain, and their individual needs.

Our team will create a customized treatment plan that’s tailored specifically for your child’s goals. The plan may include:

  • Physical therapy
  • Behavioral therapy
  • Occupational therapy
  • Medication
  • Interventional procedures

Beginning Treatment at the Chronic Pain Management Program

In most cases, pain management begins with a referral from your child’s pediatrician or provider from another specialty. Our team will review your child’s case to make sure that the program is the best fit. If so, we will reach out to you to schedule an appointment.

Before the Appointment

You will need to fill out a patient information packet and return it to the clinic before your child’s appointment. The form can be faxed to 402-955-4184 or mailed to:

Attn Cindy Hinkel
8408 Indian Hills Drive
Indian Hills East 2nd floor
Omaha, NE 68114

On the day of the appointment:

  • Arrive 15 minutes early, as there may be additional paperwork.
  • Have your child wear athletic clothes and sneakers — the appointment will include working with a physical or occupational therapist in the gym.
  • Bring a book or activity to keep yourself occupied. The appointment will last about 2 hours, and you might not need to be present with your child the whole time.

During the Appointment

The appointment will take place at the Pediatric Chronic Pain Clinic:

Children’s Spring Ridge Clinic
17819 Pierce Plaza
Omaha, Ne 68130

You and your child will meet with specialists on our chronic pain team, including an anesthesiologist, advanced practice registered nurse, psychologist, and a physical or occupational therapist.

The physical or occupational therapist will take your child to the gym and have them do several exercises to evaluate their muscle strength, coordination, range of motion, and ability to move and function.

Throughout the appointment, we may meet with you or your child individually.

Before you leave, we will develop and walk you through your child’s treatment plan.

Intensive Chronic Pain Program

For many children, chronic pain can be treated with outpatient care, such as physical therapy, or with medication. But if your child’s pain causes significant functional disability — such as having to stay home from school or being withdrawn from daily activities — they may benefit from more intensive treatment.

The Intensive Chronic Pain Program meets five mornings a week. Each day, following completion of the program, your child is expected to return to school. Our team will work directly with your child’s school on scheduling so that your child can go to school after the program without missing out on their work.

Your child will have occupational and physical therapy every day. Once a week, they will also meet with their medical team, have behavioral therapy, and participate in yoga.

Mon Tues Wed Thurs Fri
7:45-8:00 am Med Team
8:00-9:00am OT OT OT OT OT
9:00-10:00am PT PT PT PT PT
10:00-11:00am BH Yoga

(OT=Occupational Therapy; PT=Physical Therapy; BH=Behavioral Therapy)

Our Specialists

Our team is comprised of providers from multiple specialties, all dedicated to helping your child overcome the challenges of chronic pain.

Lauren B. Johnson
PhD

Behavioral Health
Chronic Pain Management
Down Syndrome

Thomas Manning
M.D.

Anesthesiology
Chronic Pain Management

Kaelee M. Stuchlik-Steffensmeier
APRN-NP, DNP

Behavioral Health
Chronic Pain Management

Meet Our Physical and Occupational Therapy Team

Jess Ackermann
Leslie Christiansen
Jess Ackermann, MOT, OTR/L
Occupational Therapist
Leslie Christiansen
Physical Therapist
  • About Jess

    Jess received her undergraduate degree at Iowa State University in December 2000. She received her Master’s Degree in Occupational Therapy from Rockhurst University in Kansas City, MO. Jess has several years’ experience working with children birth to 18 with a variety of diagnoses; including, Amplified Musculoskeletal Pain Syndrome, Neuromuscular disorders, autism spectrum disorder, Ehlers Danlos Syndrome, Sensory Processing Differences, ADHD, Traumatic Brain Injuries, fine motor and visual motor impairments, cerebral palsy and developmental delay. Jess has been part of the Amplified Musculoskeletal Pain Program since its beginning at Children’s Omaha following onsite training at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP) and Kansas City’s Children’s Mercy RAPS program.

    Specialties / Areas of Interest

    • Amplified Musculoskeletal Pain Syndrome
    • CRPS
    • Neuromuscular Disorders
    • Pediatric Splinting / Upper Extremity Orthotics
    • Pediatric Neurodevelopmental Treatment
  • About Leslie

    Leslie Christiansen is a licensed pediatric physical therapist at Children’s Hospital and Medical Center in Omaha, NE. She attended Hastings College as an undergraduate before finishing her education with a Bachelor’s in Medical Science and Doctorate of Physical Therapy from the University of Nebraska Medical Center. She has over 10 years’ experience in pediatrics working with a variety of diagnosis; including Neuromuscular disorder, Amplified Musculoskeletal Pain Syndrome, Ehlers Danlos Syndrome, Autism, cerebral palsy, Torticollis, and idiopathic toe walking. She was a part of the team that helped begin the intensive outpatient program for Amplified Musculoskeletal Pain Syndrome at CHMC in 2015 after receiving onsite training at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP) and Kansas City’s Children’s Mercy RAPS program.

    Specialties /Areas of interest

    • Amplified Musculoskeletal Pain syndrome
    • CRPS
    • Torticollis
    • Idiopathic Toe Walking
    • Developmental Delay

What To Do Next

For Patients

Your child will need a referral from their primary care provider or specialty physician, such as a neurologist or orthopedic surgeon.

To schedule an appointment, call 402-955-7170.

For Providers

To refer a patient, call 402-955-7170.

Children’s providers can send internal referrals to our clinic by going to the orders tab and placing an order for “Amb referral to chronic pain clinic.”

Learn more about referring patients.

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