Cancer is feared due to the excruciating pain that has been associated with it. About 75% of patients with cancer, and 99% patients with advanced cancer have experienced severe pain at some point of time during the disease process.
“The good news is that 80-85% of this pain can be treated”. Yes, you heard it right! Most cancers can be treated if found in the initial stages. Therefore you need to undergo checkups periodically. For instance, if you are a woman of over 40 years, you need to start doing mammograms.
Causes of Pain in Cancer:
- The disease itself
- Pressure on the surrounding nerves and vessels
- Spread to a distant site – “metastasis”
- Wound caused due to the cancer
- Pain due to the treatment processes like chemotherapy and radiation
- Coexisting pain not related to cancer (eg arthritis, sciatica etc)
Cancer Pain Treatment in Pune (At Painex Pain Management Clinic):
Now, with the advancements in medical science, it is possible to reduce pain caused due to any stage of cancer. For the management of cancer pain following treatment methods are used –
- Oral Medications: Your pain physician may prescribe you some oral medication to manage your cancer pain. This is most common treatment works for many people.
You have to take medicine regularly to control your cancer pain.Do not take any medicine by your own. You must talk with pain physician before you take these medicines, especially if you have a fever or have had kidney or liver disease, gastrointestinal bleeding, or a stomach ulcer.
Cancer Pain Management Medicines Include:
- Opiate pain relievers, such as fentanyl, hydromorphone, methadone, morphine, oxycodone, and tramadol.
- Other medicines that may be used with opiate pain relievers. These medicines may be given to help your pain medicine work better or to treat your symptoms. Or they may be given for certain types of pain. These include:
- Anticonvulsants, to help control nerve pain like burning and tingling.
- Antidepressants, to relieve pain and help you sleep.
- Anti-inflammatory drugs and corticosteroids (for example, prednisone or dexamethasone).
- Bisphosphonates, such as pamidronate and zoledronic acid, to treat bone pain.
- Local anaesthetics, such as skin creams with capsaicin or lidocaine, to help relieve pain in the skin and surrounding tissues.
- Nerve Blocks: Nerve block is a procedure in which local anaesthetic (a numbing drug),often combined with a steroid and injected into particular nerve or nerve group that is intended to reduce inflammation and relieve pain. After the injection, the nerve is no longer able to spread pain and hence pain is relieved for some time.
- Intrathecal Pump: In this type of treatment, medicines are injected into spinal cord, where pain signals travel. In this technique, a 1 inch thick and 3 inch wide pocket is made under the skin that’s large enough to hold a medicine pump. A catheter is also inserted to carry pain medicine from the pump to the intrathecal space around the spinal cord. The implants deliver medicines directly to the spinal cord, and pain is controlled.
- Radio frequency ablation: In Radio frequency ablation (or RFA), an electrical current produced by a radio wave is used to heat up a small area of nerve tissue, thereby decreasing pain signals from that specific area. It is suitable method for patients with chronic (long-lasting) cancer pain. It is very safe and effective way to treat some forms of pain.
These cancer pain management techniques are extremely beneficial. It also increases moral of patients for next treatments. The pain caused when cancer extends into whole body can also be managed with above techniques.