Chronic pain can be caused by the side effects and complications of cancer treatment. An individualised, patient-based approach to pain management is important in cancer survivors and needs to take into account the pain mechanism, underlying cancer diagnosis, oncological treatments received, risk of recurrence, presence of comorbidities and performance status of the patient.
- Although people with cancer may experience chronic noncancer pain caused by comorbid conditions, chronic pain may also be caused from cancer treatment.
- Better management of pain caused by cancer treatment helps patients to complete therapy and improves cancer outcomes.
- All cancer treatment modalities can cause chronic pain, with postsurgical pain syndromes and chemotherapy neuropathy being the most common.
- Cancer survivors will benefi t most from a biopsychosocial approach to pain assessment and management.
- Chronic pain after cancer treatment should be managed in a similar way to chronic noncancer pain.