Oral Cancer Pain Management & Control
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Pain Management for Oral Cancer
Pain is subjective. It affects each person differently, depending on a variety of factors. You may experience pain from the oral cancer itself, or as a side effect of cancer treatment. Many patients arrive at Cancer Treatment Centers of America (CTCA) experiencing side effects from previous oral cancer treatments.
Our pain management practitioners take as much time as needed to fully understand your condition. We make pain assessments using a variety of tools, including pain management scales and symptom tracking methods. We also really listen, so we’re able to locate your pain and take the appropriate steps to manage it.
For oral cancer patients, we treat pain that results from a variety of causes, including nerve damage, tissue changes and long-standing issues, such as headaches or stomach aches. Your pain management practitioner will develop a customized pain control plan based on the other medications you are taking, and the medications that have worked in the past, if any.
Ongoing Pain Assessment
Throughout your care, your pain management practitioner will constantly reassess your pain. We use a pain management scale, which tells us how you function throughout the day. Then, we alter your treatment regimen accordingly.
We also want you to be able to continue daily activities as normally as possible. Your pain management practitioner will adjust your medications to seek a balance between pain relief and quality of life.
The CTCA pain management team is fully integrated with the other disciplines offered at the hospital. For example, if appropriate, your comprehensive treatment plan will include physical therapy, which may help trigger the release of endorphins, the body’s natural pain killer. At the same time, the naturopathic medicine team may recommend other natural remedies to help reduce any side effects caused by your pain medication.
For oral cancer patients staying at the hospital, “Comfort Rounds” are conducted twice weekly. During these visits, pain management practitioners thoroughly evaluate your current pain level and how your current treatment approach is working, and will make any necessary modifications to your pain control plan.
With careful diagnosis and a combination of pain management methods, we strive to control your oral cancer- related pain while maintaining your quality of life.
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