Cancer pain in Delray Beach affects patients differently. Pain is a classic symptom of the disease; thus, a significant percentage of cancer patients will experience debilitating symptoms at some point. The pain can result from the disease itself or due to the harsh treatment regimes used in the fight against this killer disease. Regardless of the type of cancer, a patient’s pain should not define one’s way of living.
What is the relationship between cancer and pain?
Most types of cancers have the possibility of causing pain. However, the level of pain you might experience depends on various factors including:
- The stage and whether it has spread significantly
- The cancer type
- Your level of pain tolerance
- Other accompanying health conditions you might have
- Treatments and therapies you might be receiving
Pain resulting from the cancer is usually due to the tumor pressing on your nerves, organs or bones. The growths may also cause painful symptoms when they spread to areas like your spinal cord. Cancer pain occurs in the following intensities:
- Acute pain. The pain begins instantly then resolves quickly
- Chronic pain. Unlike acute pain, chronic pain lingers for a while. It can be sharp or a low throb, affecting your life significantly. Though it hangs on, you can manage it with medications
- Breakthrough pain. The type breaks through occasionally through medication effects, especially when you manage chronic pain. Though the pain is fast and does not last long, the pulses can be significant.
How can you manage cancer pain?
There are different management options your doctor can suggest to control cancer pain. They include:
Medications. Most often, the primary physician will prescribe medications to help ease your pain. The prescription will depend on your pain levels, whether the symptoms are mild, moderate or excruciating. The options you are likely to have include:
- Opioids (for moderate or chronic pain)
- Acetaminophen and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs). The drug combination is ideal when you have mild pain. However, your healthcare provider might use NSAIDs with opioids when you have moderate or severe pain.
- Other drugs your primary physician might also include in your treatment plan include corticosteroids, antidepressants and anti-seizure medications.
Cordotomy. The less common procedure entails cutting particular nerves near your spinal cord to ease the symptoms.
Nerve stimulations. The devices stimulate your nerves with a controlled electrical current, helping alleviate the pain.
Therapies. Your healthcare provider might also suggest alternative therapies like acupuncture and relaxation techniques alongside other standard treatments to help with the pain.
Managing cancer pain can help ease your pain, enhancing your life quality. Talk to your primary physician when the pain:
- Is relentless
- Occurs amidst medication doses
- Is different and felt in a new location
- Fails to resolve with pain relievers
- Interferes with your everyday life
Different cancer types have varying pain levels. Thus, some cancers, especially those pressing on your nerves or bones, can result in frustrating symptoms. The good news is that the pain is manageable. Talk to your doctor if the pain does not resolve with medication or feel the pain in a different location besides the usual spot to help alleviate the pain.