Dr. Miquidade currently holds many roles. She is the Director of Pain and Palliative Care Unit in Maputo Central Hospital (Mozambique), President of the Mozambican Association for the Study of Pain, Vice Chairman of Maputo Central Hospital’s Opioid Commission, Focal point on Palliative Care in the National Cancer Program of the Ministry of Health, and Invited Professor at the Faculty of Medicine of the University of Porto (Portugal). She specializes in anesthesiology and holds a Master in Pain Management. She is also currently a PhD Student. IASP talked with her about her research and clinical practice.
How did you get into pain science? Did you always know it was what you wanted to do or did you start somewhere else?
During the last year of my residency in Spain, I had the opportunity to learn and practice eco-guided blocks used in post-operative pain management. When I returned to Mozambique, I applied for a 3 months course in Portugal to learn more. After that, when I returned to my hospital, I started to work in the acute pain team and occasionally in chronic pain, until a short time later when I was placed in the Pain Unit full time.
What topics does your current research/ clinical practice cover? How does this affect the public?
My clinical practice is focused on postoperative, neuropathic, and cancer pain. We are at the referral hospital in the country, the only hospital in the country that has more than 6 techniques for pain relief, and the only one that occasionally has oral morphine solution for cancer patients.
What has been your most significant achievement in or contribution to the pain field thus far?
The most important achievement over the years has been the introduction of techniques such as eco-guided blocks, ozone therapy, acupuncture, which in our country have helped a lot since we have a lot of limitation of essential medicines. I have also contributed to the successful grant applications for 4 doctors’ specialization in Pain treatment (1 anesthesiologist, 1 oncologist and 2 general practitioners), and 1 general practitioner with higher education in Palliative Care. The other significant achievement was the inclusion of Palliative Care Service in the country’s main hospital, and in the National Cancer Program of the Ministry of Health in Mozambique.
What has been your biggest professional challenge/obstacle thus far and how did you handle it/overcome it?
The biggest professional obstacle that I faced and I have faced most of the time is not being understood. It is the fact that sometimes people do not realize that my “cry for help” in the Pain and Palliative Care Unit in Mozambique is for those who can no longer cry because of suffering, particularly cancer patients. I have overcome it because my focus is on the goal I want to achieve. I look at this obstacle as something fleeting and part of life, but not as an impediment to reaching my goals.
If you could offer one piece of advice to a younger you, what would it be and why?
Always be willing to learn every day, to make a difference where you are. Do not focus on the difficulties, but on the goals you want to achieve. I was born, grew up, and live in a country with many difficulties, but since I was a child my parents taught me to look at the goals I intend to achieve and not at the difficulties.
Why did you become an IASP member?
I became an IASP member because I am responsible for both the Association and the largest Pain Unit in my country. The only way we have to learn is to be connected with the experts in the field, to see how do they do it, to ask for opinion, and to try to adapt it to our reality. And I am an IASP member because I will only grow in this area if I stay connected with experts from IASP.
What do you do in your spare time? Do you have any hobbies, other pursuits, or hidden talents?
In my free time, I like to be with my family. We have a couple of children, 15 and 13 years old, and we talk, watch comedies, listen to gospel music, and read the Bible together. I like to enjoy nature. Writing and painting are part of my life. I am part of the Mozambican Association of Medical Writers and Artists. And finally I like swimming.
Interested in becoming a member of IASP?
With your IASP membership, you gain access to:
- PAIN Journal
- Pain Education Resource Center (PERC)
- Access to 24 Special Interest Groups (SIGs)
- Online Career Center access
- Discounts on World Congress
- Network of thousands of pain researchers from around the world!
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