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About Cancer Pain

Cancer Pain

If you are living with chronic pain due to cancer, you may think it is a natural part of the disease or its treatment and something that must be endured. You may also have decided that side effects from pain medications must be tolerated in exchange for pain control. You do not have to live this way. Managing pain as well as side effects from your medication is possible. Many people experience significant improvement in their pain symptoms after receiving drug delivery therapy from Medtronic. This means they can do more of the everyday things that make life special.

Definition

"Cancer" refers to any one of a large number of diseases. People with cancer have abnormal cells in their bodies that divide uncontrollably and can destroy normal body tissue. Cancer can spread throughout the body. Often, cancer or its treatment causes pain.1

Causes

There are several biological reasons you may feel cancer pain:

  • Cancer treatment such as surgery, radiation, and chemotherapy
  • Scar tissue resulting from surgery or cancer treatment
  • Tumor growth that invades or presses on bones, nerves, the spinal cord, or body organs

Diagnosis

Your doctor may diagnose you with uncontrolled cancer pain if your pain doesn't go away, even when medication is taken as directed.


1

National Cancer Institute. Pain control: Support for people with cancer. Dept. Health Human Services, NIH Publication No. 12-6287, Revised July 2012. http://www.cancer.gov/cancertopics/coping/paincontrol. Accessed 21 February 2014.


Information on this site should not be used as a substitute for talking with your doctor. Always talk with your doctor about diagnosis and treatment information.