Chronic Pain

What are the types of pain that are most likely to occur in pediatric cancer patients?

Cancer is a pain-causing disease, the parents and the healthcare team must provide treatments that are highly efficient in managing the pain that is caused due to the presence of the disease. This is one of the biggest feelings of dread for the youngster as well as the parent. So all efforts in place are mostly directed to easing that pain during and after the treatment process. 

In straightforward terms, pain can be characterized as a vibe of uneasiness, pain, or desolation. The pain that each child may experience is unique and it can never be measured with an imaging study or in a lab test. The child’s pan can be evaluated by observing them keenly during their treatment process and asking them about it. Pain assessment in a child can be done with a number of tools and techniques. The pain that they experience can be acute or chronic. Cause pain is relatively experienced in the short term but in the case of chronic pain it ranges from mild to severe and it is present in egress and quite noticeable in the long term. Acute pain is mostly due to the body signaling that the tissues are being injured and once those damaged tissues are healed, they tend to go away. 

It is a common belief that most people diagnosed with cancer might be in some sort of pain or the other but that is necessarily not the case. Pain can be reduced and prevented. So one of the important areas that need to be taken into consideration for a decision needs to be with your child’s doctor is when you suspect the presence of cancer or when the diagnosis starts. Pain occurs either due to cancer, it’s a result of the diagnosis, or for other reasons too. Kids typically have general uneasiness, pains, muscle strains, and migraines yet it ought to be noticed that not all agonies communicated are because of cancer or being brought about by the disease.

Cancer pains are mainly due to the type of cancer the child is experiencing and the extent of the disease that the child might be undergoing. The pin that arises during cancer treatment and those that last for a time longer than anticipated are caused due  to, 

  • Ill-advised blood flow because of the disease cancers impeding the veins
  • Pain due to the enlargement of the tumor. It is generally caused because it squeezes the body organs, nerves, or bones.
  • Infection or inflammation
  • Stiffness caused due to inactivity
  • The cancer spreads to various other parts of the body by a process called metastasis. 
  • Pain from the incidental effects caused because of cancer  therapy like a medical procedure, chemotherapy, and radiation treatment
  • Blockage happening in an organ or a cylinder in the body
  • Mental reactions to the disease, for example, feeling restless, discouraged, or strained.

The treatment for the pain condition of your child will be based on 

  • The age of your child, the general health condition, and their medical history
  • The type of cancer that your child has been experiencing
  • The severity and the extent of the disease
  • The resilience of your kid to specific operations or treatments
  • Your opinion or preference

Pain management can be done based on two categories, pharmacological and non-pharmacological

Pharmacological pain management.

Treating pain conditions by the use of medication is known as pharmacological pain management. In case the child is to undergo any sort of painful medical procedure, pediatric oncology clinics offer several pain management options available for the particular type of procedure. These commonly include a lumbar puncture or a bone marrow aspiration.  There are different types of pain management drugs and the method of managing every one of them will be unique. It can ordinarily shift from transitory, gentle sedation to full broad sedation in the working room. The following are the ways by which pain medication will be typically given, 

  • Orally
  • Intravenously
  • By a special catheter in the back
  • Or a patch on the skin

The following are some of the pharmacological methods given for pain-relieving, 

  • Utilization of less than overwhelming pain killers like ibuprofen and acetaminophen
  • Sedation is typically given by IV
  • Narcotic analgesics like morphine and oxycodone
  • General anesthesia
  • Skin sedatives, for example, creams or fixes are placed on the skin to numb the region.

Some children are tolerant to pain relievers and sedatives so there arises a need when the dosage amount needs to be increased and the initial choice of mediation may not work as efficiently as it needs to. Families d fear that their child might get addicted to these pain-relieving drugs; however, it is also necessary to understand that the goal of administering such pain medication is for the sole purpose of providing the child relief from pain, giving them comfort, and improving their overall quality of life. So it is necessary to make sure the child is free of pain at all costs. There are no reports of addiction when children who were treated for cancer were given pain meds. 

Non-pharmacological pain management:

The management of pain conditions without the utilization of meds is known as non-pharmacological pain for the executives. The techniques that are used in freeing such sorts from pain incorporate changing the reasoning and concentration to diminish the aggravation levels. It is done by, 


Expecting something without knowing what to expect is one of the major contributors to anxiety and pain. In the event that the youngster realizes what is going to happen to them their feelings of anxiety will be a lot lower and they will be considerably looser and prepared to confront whatever comes in their direction. Stress-easing strategies can be achieved by making sense of the means and methods exhaustively by utilizing basic pictures or outlines. Meeting with the concerned specialist who will carry out the methodology and permit the youngster to pose any connected inquiries before the beginning of the techniques. The child can take a look at the room where they will undergo the procedure. 


An expert in this field will direct the youngster into a changed condition of cognizance that assists them with reducing their consideration o forestall any kind of pointless uneasiness


Directing the youngster through a fanciful mental interaction where they are approached to imagine specific pictures, and pay attention to specific sounds, scents, tastes, and sentiments with the goal that they can move their consideration away from the aggravation.


Another helpful technique that works well in babies and kids is by using vibrant and moving objects. In the case of preschoolers, the distraction method works well when telling them stories, singing songs, and looking at books together. Older children distract themselves by watching movies or listening to songs.  This method however should not be replaced with retelling them what they are about to expect. 

Utilization of another non-pharmacological pain the executives may likewise be finished and they incorporate needle therapy, back rub, or biofeedback to dispose of any sort of distress.

The pain experienced by each child will be different.  So it is critical to tailor the pain management techniques in view of the kid’s necessities. The right treatment plan cannot be decided right away as it needs a lot of trial and error testing methods.

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