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Pain management improves cancer patients' quality of life

Pain management improves cancer patients' quality of life

Written by  Facing Cancer Together
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Chronic pain can be both physically and emotionally draining for a person, and can affect the entire family.  Dr. To-Nhu Vu is the Director of WellSpan's Interventional Pain Management program. She says that cancer patients experience pain not only from the cancer tumor itself, but the treatments for cancer. Depression, anxiety and other psychological effects of cancer can also cause pain.

back_pain_from_cancerDr. Vu says it's important for patients to communicate their pain to their doctor so they can set goals for a pain management plan. But, as pain if oftentimes under-treated, it's important for doctors as well to ask their patients to talk about their pain. She uses a scale from 1-10 to gauge a patient's pain, and does a baseline assessment with each patient at the beginning, so they can chart the progress.  Scroll down to watch a video of Dr. Vu.

Dr. Vu and her colleagues at WellSpan Interventional Pain Management are dedicated to finding effective pain relief for each individual.  Whether pain relief is achieved through pain medications, invasive techniques or other non-invasive therapies such as massage, their work helps patients renew a sense of well-being, helps them reach their goals and allows them to resume work.  But, most importantly,  patients have a more comfortable quality of life with family and loved ones.

The following represent some of the interventions and treatments available through WellSpan Interventional Pain Management:

  • Bier blocks
  • Blood patches
  • Bursa/joint injections
  • Celiac plexus blocks
  • Cryoneurolysis
  • Discography
  • Epidural steroid injections
  • Facet injectionsIlioinguinal nerve blocks
  • Intercostal nerve blocks
  • Intrathecal pump management
  • Lumbar sympathetic blocks
  • Radiofrequency lesioning
  • Sequential muscle stimulators
  • Spinal cord stimulation
  • Stellate ganglion blocks
  • Trigger point injections

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