Pain Management during Treatment

OncoLink
Last Modified: June 8, 2012

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Question

I am getting chemo & radiation. Should I tough it out with the pain during treatment? I'm afraid to start taking pain killers.

Answer

Alexander Lin, MD, Radiation Oncologist at Penn Medicine, responds:

You should not "tough it out." There are many forms of therapy we can employ during therapy to minimize pain. By minimizing pain, your ability to maintain your weight, hydration, and nutritional status will be greatly improved. This, in the end, will help maximize your chances of long-term cancer control.

Answer

Carolyn Vachani, RN, MSN OncoLink Nurse Educator at Penn Medicine, responds:

Learn more about how your routine dental visits are part of cancer screening on OncoLink.

This question and answer was part of the OncoLink Brown Bag Chat Series. View the entire Head and Neck Cancer Q&A Webchat transcript.


News
Long-Term Survival Factors ID'd for Head, Neck Cancer

Nov 24, 2011 - Older age, advanced stage, pain, poor quality of life, and smoking are risk factors associated with poorer survival among two-year survivors of head and neck cancer, according to a study published in the November issue of the Archives of Otolaryngology -- Head & Neck Surgery.



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