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Current approach to cancer pain management: Availability and implications of different treatment options

Authors Hrachya Nersesyan, Konstantin V Slavin

Published 15 July 2007 Volume 2007:3(3) Pages 381—400

Hrachya Nersesyan1, Konstantin V Slavin2

1Department of Neurology, University of Illinois at Peoria, Peoria, IL, USA; 2Department of Neurosurgery, University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago, IL, USA

Abstract: Despite tremendous progress in medicine during last couple of decades, cancer still remains the most horrifying diagnosis for anybody due to its almost inevitable futility. According to American Cancer Society Statistics, it is estimated that only in the United States more than half a million people will die from cancer in 2006. For those who survive, probably the most fearsome symptom regardless of cancer type will be the pain. Although most pain specialists and oncologists worldwide are well aware of the importance to adequately treat the pain, it was yet established that more than half of cancer patients have insufficient pain control, and about quarter of them actually die in pain. Therefore, in this review article we attempted to provide the comprehensive information about different options available nowadays for treating cancer pain focusing on most widely used pharmacologic agents, surgical modalities for intractable pain control, their potential for adverse effects, and ways to increase the effectiveness of treatment maximally optimizing analgesic regimen and improving compliance.

Keywords: analgesic ladder, opioids, adjuvant, neuromodulation

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