Most Painful Type of Cancer
Pain is a sign that our body uses to tell us that something is wrong. Nervous system via nerves informs the brain that particular part of the body is damaged. When information comes to the brain, we experience pain. Most cancer pain is caused by the tumor pressing on bones, nerves or other organs in the body. Also, pain can be related to cancer treatment.
Cancer & Pain
Between 30% and 50% of people with cancer will experience some sort of pain. However, some patients affected by cancer don’t experience pain. Amount of pain associated with cancer depends on type of cancer, the stage of cancer, where the cancer is and if cancer or cancer treatment has damaged any nerve.
Severe pain does not automatically mean that the cancer is growing or spreading. Big tumor may not cause almost any pain while tiny tumor if pressing on a nerve or spinal cord can lead to extreme pain.
Pain usually increases as cancer progresses. Advanced cancer is typically followed by pain. Advanced cancer means that the disease has spread or returned after the treatment. Studies have shown that 90% of patients with advanced cancer experience severe pain. It is most commonly due to tumor that metastasizes to the bone. Such pain can be relieved to certain degree with the help of appropriate treatment.
Cancer treatment such as radiation or surgery can also cause pain. Pain induced by cancer treatment usually starts or intensifies after the treatment is over. Such pain can be present for several months or even years after ending of the treatment. It is caused by nerve changes and it is sometimes called persistent pain if present all the time. This type of pain is hard to treat with over-the-counter painkillers and requires other treatments.
Influence of Pain
Pain can strongly influence your physical and emotional state. Pain depends on your tolerance and it is an individual experience. That is why, individual treatment plan is necessary to control the pain. You must describe the pain in details to your doctor so that he or she could choose the best treatment. You should explain how your pain looks like, if it is stabbing, burning or aching. Explain where the pain is, if it is located in one area or if it is spreading beyond that area. The doctor also needs to know if this pain starts suddenly or develops gradually. Frequency of the pain is important information as well. Finally, you must tell your doctor what relieves your pain, if it is a massage or changing position or if it is heat or cold.