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Individuals with cancer frequently feel serious or consistent pain. The pain they experience depend upon the type of cancer they have, the stage the cancer is at, and the treatment they get. Nearly 25% to half of individuals with cancer complain pain at the time of diagnosis, and up to 75% of individuals with cancer complain pain as the cancer progresses.
Symptoms of cancer depend upon the type of cancer, where the cancer has spread, or where it is located.
Cancer pain can be described as dull aching, tingling, pressure, burning, etc. The type of pain frequently gives hints about the type of the pain. Case in point, pain caused by damage to nerves is typically described as tingling and burning, though pain inflecting internal organs is regularly depicted as a sensation of pressure.
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Cancer Pain Has Two Primary Sources
Nociceptive pain is the pain spread by nerves with the job of passing on damage in a part of the body. The pain is felt as pressure or achings – most cancer pain feels like this. Neuropathic (nerve) pain refers to pain caused by damage inside the sensory (nervous) system. The pain is felt as stabbing sensations or sharp shooting and records for 50% of cancer pain disorders, which is a specific group of related pains.
Experience of pain is frequently a blend of distinctive sorts of pain. Pain can also be worsened by the anxiety of pain itself or of getting sicker. On rare occasions, the pain is increased by mental factors or the presence of psychiatric issues, similar to anxiety or depression.
Unrelieved pain causes suffering and further weakens the patient with cancer. At some point, pain is best relieved by curing the cancer. However, other pain relief medicines are generally required. Most doctors will request that individuals use painkillers all the time. This helps reduce anxiety from delaying the start of pain relief. Therapies such as acupressure, acupuncture physical therapy, massage, meditation, relaxation and humor may help
When the pain is moderate, pain relievers like acetylsalicylic acid or acetaminophen may help. Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) like ibuprofen are quite effective on bone pain. Other medicines may also be useful, particularly for neuropathic (nerve) pain. These may include anticonvulsants, muscle relaxants, and antidepressants. Nerve blocks might also be used.
There are a wide variety of approaches to treat cancer pain. Common way is to remove the source of pain, for instance, chemotherapy, through surgery, radiation or some other type of treatment.
Specialized treatment, for example, nerve blocks, can also be used. Nerve blocks are a local anesthetic that is injected into a nerve, which reduces/removes pain messages going along that nerve pathway from reaching the brain.