In This Section      


The Johns Hopkins Neurosurgery Pain Research Institute leverages basic brain, spine, and peripheral nerve neuroscience, combined with clinical brain and spine imaging, pharmacology and human genomics to gain insights into new treatments for people with painful conditions. The objective is therapy that treats painful conditions as antibiotics target specific bacteria in the treatment of infectious diseases.

The Neurosurgery Pain Research Institute comprises several clinical and research units and builds on existing work in pain conducted by a range of Johns Hopkins specialists. Collaboration affords us the chance to accelerate research, improve our understanding of acute and chronic pain and advance its treatment through novel drugs, prevention options and treatment therapies. Our work has major implications for future social services, education and policy issues.

Clinical Research Center

Our goal is to create an evidence-based clinical research center that will facilitate faculty members conducting clinical trials and outcome research. Program Aims:

  • To develop a research infrastructure in the Johns Hopkins Department of Neurosurgery to facilitate pain-associated clinical research in brain tumor, cerebrovascular, spine, and neuro-oncology.
  • To cultivate clinical research in advancing a better understanding of neurosurgical pain and pursuing optimal clinical pain management through clinical trials, including testing novel neurosurgical procedures, therapeutics and translating laboratory science into clinical practice to improve pain control, patient’s quality of life and overall survivorship.
  • To develop statistical methodology and techniques specialized for neurosurgical clinical research and use state-of-the-art study design to meet current challenges in surgical trials.
  • To participate in the neurosurgical residency training program ensuring that future generations of neurosurgeons trained at Johns Hopkins will have advanced clinical research skills and experience in neurosurgical pain management and clinical trials.

Pain Resource Team

A pain management interdisciplinary team will serve in a consultative capacity with the clinical teams in the neurosciences functional unit. The pain management team will include a dedicated credentialed pain management nurse, a pain clinical specialist-pharmacist, and a pain-expert physician faculty leader. The program aims include:

  • To test the hypothesis that by reducing the perioperative pain maximally will reduce the likelihood of a patient having a chronic pain problem.
  • Improve patient satisfaction, comfort and treatment by improving the management of post-operative pain.
  • Attend to the patient safety consequences of pain, as pain increases both fall risks and cognitive interference. Effective pain treatment requires the balancing of risks and benefits.
  • Increase the interdisciplinary team’s proficiency, knowledge and understanding about pain management and the patient’s pain experience.
  • Reduce delayed physical therapy and occupational therapy assessments due to inadequate pain control.
  • Promote effective pain management across the continuum, including other evidence-based interventions and also the patient’s participation in pain control, i.e., transitions from clinic visit or from NCCU to inpatient units to home.

Pain Research Core (PRC)

Co-founded and financed by the Blaustein Pain Research Fund and the Neurosurgery Pain Research Institute, PRC comprises two parts: the Cell Imaging and Electrophysiology Core and the Pain-related Quantitative Behavioral Core. The group's multidisciplinary team is dedicated to preclinical pain research, offering researchers state-of the-art resources for assays in the following areas:

  • Studying pain mechanisms
  • Identifying new drug targets
  • Developing novel analgesics
  • Crafting innovative strategies for pain treatment

Contact us

To learn more about the Neurosurgery Pain Research Institute at Johns Hopkins - To Control, Prevent, and Eliminate Pain, please email us.