Master of Science in Pain Medicine

Keck School of Medicine of USC and the Herman Ostrow School of Dentistry of USC

The Division of Pain Medicine at the Keck School of Medicine at USC and the Herman Ostrow School of Dentistry of USC offers an intensive 3-year Master’s degree.

This multidisciplinary program is specifically designed for all licensed clinicians (physicians, dentists, nurses, physical and occupational therapists, psychologists, pharmacists, etc.) who seek advanced knowledge in pain medicine. The program responds to a critical need for pain education to support the world’s aging population, and to help professionals develop ethical and manageable pain relief systems for patients and clients. The Online Master in Pain Medicine is a program with a total 27 courses (33 academic units), specifically designed for the practicing professional who wants to improve skills and gain expertise to deliver the best care for patients with complex pain conditions.  The curriculum is designed with a series of didactic courses where students will gain knowledge about the diagnosis, pathobiology and management of pain conditions. The goal of this postdoctoral 3-year Master program is to give practicing health care providers advanced clinical, didactic, and evidence-based education in the field of Pain Medicine.

The students participate in weekly live online sessions with faculty and other program residents, ensuring a collaborative and social learning experience. There are 2-3 courses per trimester, with 2-4 streaming video lectures for viewing each week.  After each video lecture students complete an associated online quiz (comprised of multiple choice, short answer or fill-in questions).

Program Goals and Objectives

Graduates of this program will gain an understanding of the following:

1. Multidimensional nature of pain

2. Pain Assessment and Measurement

3. Management of Pain

4. Clinical Conditions


PAIN-701     Pharmacotherapeutics for Pain  (2 units)
PAIN-702     Pain Classification and Diagnosis – Part 1 (2 units)
PAIN-703     Psychological Aspects of the Pain Experience: Individual and Family (2 Units)
PAIN-704     Pain and Society: Epidemiology and Cultural issues (1 unit)
PAIN-705     Pain Assessment:  History and Physical Examination (1 units)
PAIN-708     Opioids  (1 unit)
PAIN-709     Pain Classification and Diagnosis – Part 2 (2 units)
PAIN-710     Advanced Pain Physiology and Neuroscience  (1 units)
PAIN-711     Research Methodology
PAIN-712a   Pain Medicine Capstone (0.5 unit)
PAIN-713a   Case Studies   (0.5 unit)
PAIN-712b   Pain Medicine Capstone (0.5 unit)
PAIN-713b   Case Studies   (0.5 unit)
PAIN-712c   Pain Medicine Capstone (0.5 unit)
PAIN-713c   Case Studies   (0.5 unit)
PAIN-712d   Pain Medicine Capstone (0.5 unit)
PAIN-713d   Case Studies   (0.5 unit)
PAIN-714     Public policy and Legal issues (1 units)
PAIN-715     History of Pain:  Theory and Treatment (1 unit)
PAIN-716     Neuropathic pain (1 units)
PAIN-717     Psychological Aspects of Chronic Pain (2 units)
PAIN-718     Complementary Approaches  (2 units)
PAIN-719     Elective 1 Building a practice: Institutional or private (1 unit)
PAIN-720     Physical & Occupational Therapies  (1 units)
PAIN-721     Elective 2 Advanced Therapeutics (2 units)
PAIN-722     Elective 1 Palliative Care in end of life (1 units)
PAIN-723     Elective 2 Orofacial Pain and Headache (2 units)

Faculty Spotlight

Dr. Steven Richeimer Dr. Glenn Clark