PATIENTS, council bosses and medical experts joined together to celebrate the success of a pain relief clinic at an East Shields health centre.
A wide range of services are housed under one roof at the multi-million Cleadon Park Primary Care Centre, in Prince Edward Road.
As well as a GP surgery, pharmacy and mental health and speech therapy services, the building also offers an intermediate musculoskeletal assessment and treatment service (STIMATS).
People from across the borough have been able to receive life-changing relief from constant pain, thanks to the service.
Coun Ernest Gibson, deputy mayor of South Tyneside, said: “Successfully securing the pain management clinic at Cleadon Park Primary Care Centre has been achieved through determination and partnership working.
“We listened to people’s concerns in the borough, when they raised their problems. This essential health service has now been safeguarded due to tireless campaigning and ensuring residents’ needs have been communicated to the highest level.”
Brenda Clarke and Marion Beston are two ladies brought together by the benefits of the pain management clinic.
Mrs Clarke, 72, from East Boldon was a keen rambler and mountain biker, before suffering from arthritis and severe back pain.
She said: “I was prescribed a lot of tablets for the pain, but it was when I was referred to Dr Gudipati, a pain management consultant at the clinic, that I really experienced a difference.
“He has given me a number of cortisone injections and also, about 12 months ago, a procedure that involved burning the nerve endings around the painful area in my back.
“The results have been great and the pain has now subsided to the point that it has greatly improved my mobility,
“I know I’ll never be 100 per cent, but my quality of life has improved substantially and for that I am very grateful.”
Mrs Beston, 77, also had pain because of arthritis and had a hip replacement 10 years ago.
She added: “I first got serious back pain 10 years ago and then my right hip started to fail and the pain was terrible. I couldn’t walk or even stand for any length of time.
“But since being referred to the pain management clinic I’ve been receiving cortisone injections that have changed my life. At first the pain was reduced for about only two months, but now I only need an injection every six, which has had an amazing impact.
“I’ve been able to attend water aerobics and Thai Chi classes, which is wonderful.”