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Management issues in chronic pain following cancer therapy 

Management issues in chronic pain following cancer therapy
Chapter:
Management issues in chronic pain following cancer therapy
Author(s):

Martin Chasen

and Gordon Giddings

DOI:
10.1093/med/9780199656097.003.0135
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date: 07 May 2021

With improved surveillance, diagnoses, and treatment of patients with cancer, an increased life expectancy, and specifically an increased number of ‘cancer cured’ patients, is noted. However, the long-term effects of the disease and treatment have a bearing on obtaining optimal physical, psychological, and cognitive functioning for cancer survivors. Pain impacts on all dimensions of quality of life and is one of the most distressing symptoms for patients. Patients often under-recognize pain and are unsure if optimum pain control is achievable. In addition, members of the interdisciplinary team often fail to assess the patient’s pain adequately, due to a lack of knowledge of the principles of pain relief and side effect management. Treatment requires an interprofessional approach that details a comprehensive assessment, with ongoing reassessment, utilizing both pharmacological and non-pharmacological measures. Empowerment of the cancer survivor, respect for survivors’ individuality and collaboration among team members are key elements of any successful strategy to optimize a patient’s quality of life.

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