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Pain Relief for Cancer Patients

By: treatrea
If you suffer from cancer-related pain, you have more than one option for pain relief.

About one in three patients experience pain from cancer. The more advanced the cancer, the more likely it is that you will have pain and require some sort of pain management or pain relief.

Cancer pain can be severe or mild, and it can be constant or it may only occur once in awhile. As cancer research progresses, doctors have become quite familiar with all forms of cancer-related pain and with the pain relief options they can offer their patients.

Pain can come from treatments, from nerve pressure or from tumors. Depending on the severity and source of the pain, your doctor will prescribe aspirin, acetaminophen, anti-inflammatory medication like ibuprofen, or perhaps even codeine, or stronger medications like morphine, oxycondone, or others.

In some cases, your doctor may prescribe massage, self-hypnosis, meditation, acupuncture or acupressure for pain relief.

If you plan to use medication for pain relief, you should understand that pain medications do have side effects. You may become constipated, feel confused or lethargic, or even have hallucinations in extreme cases. If your doctor gives you a prescription for pain relief, be sure to stay in touch with him or her and let the doctor know if you have symptoms or side effects.

Sometimes, the symptoms or side effects are temporary, while your body is adjusting to the new medication, and these symptoms may disappear after a week or two. If you are taking anti-inflammatory medication like Advil, ibuprofens or other medication, with frequency, be sure to have your doctor check your blood pressure and perform periodic blood work to monitor your kidney function etc.

If taken regularly, aspirin can cause ulcers or gastrointestinal bleeding, so you'll want to monitor your health and symptoms carefully.
When you talk to your doctor about pain relief, your doctor will probably ask you to rate your pain on a scale of one to ten. How severe does the pain get? How often do you get the pain? What type of pain are you feeling?

With this information in mind, your doctor will recommend pain relief techniques or medications. Remember, YOU are the patient. If you do not want to take a certain medication or you would prefer a more natural method of pain management, discuss these preferences with your doctor and ask for recommendations.

If you find that you are still not able to achieve relief from the pain you feel, ask your doctor to refer you to a Pain Management clinic or specialist. All large cancer treatment programs have pain management services and these are covered by standard health insurance policies. You do not have to suffer in silence!

If you work together with your doctor and other specialists, you can find a pain management technique or combination of techniques and medication, to help you handle your cancer-related pain.
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