"According to the Philippine Cancer Facts and Estimates, there will be 6 million people worldwide and 200,000 Filipinos who will suffer from cancer pain, majority of which are not satisfactorily relieved in spite of availability of well-established, simple and cost-effective methods for cancer pain relief." ~Dr. Dolma Santos, Member of the Board of Directors of the Pain Society of the Philippines
Menarini held a media event discussing about what breakthrough cancer pain is and introduces a game changer in its management at Edsa Shangri-la last March 8, 2017.
A lot of cancer patients always come to the part of experiencing breakthrough pain, even when persistent pain is controlled with maintenance of regular doses of pain medication. The hardest part is more often it's difficult to predict when it is going to happen and how hard and painful it will feel. Breakthrough pain can happen throughout the day, even when you are on the right doses of medication for your persistent pain.
Some patients already recognizes when they are about to get and or feel attack, they already take a dose of their medication in advance before it occur. It may take some time for you and your doctor to figure out the right medication and best dose for treating your breakthrough pain.
2 Types of Cancer Pain
Most cancer pain is caused by the tumour pressing on bones, nerves or other organs in the body. Sometimes pain is due to your cancer treatment. Some chemotherapy drugs can cause numbness and tingling in your hands and feet. Or they might cause a burning sensation at the spot where you have the injection. Radiotherapy can cause skin redness and irritation.
"Breakthrough Cancer Pain (BTcP) is a transient exacerbation of pain that occurs either spontaneously, or in relation to a specific predictable or unpredictable trigger, despite relatively stable and adequately controlled background pain. BTcP is characterised by a sudden onset of pain that reaches peak intensity within as little as 3 minutes and lasts for an average of 30 minutes. Patients with cancer have around 4 episodes of Breakthrough Cancer Pain in a day." ~Professor Michael Uberall, Member of the Board of Directors of the Pain Society of the Philippines
Breakthrough Cancer Pain is a common problem among cancer patients and is also known to have a severe detrimental impact on quality of life (QoL), including daily functioning, social relationships and enjoyment of life. Furthermore, a number of studies have reported that a large proportion of patients with BTcP feel dissatisfied with their pain control. Thus, there is a need for effective treatments for relief of BTcP as current treatments do not adequately address BTcP.
Breakthrough pain is a brief flare-up of severe pain that occurs even while the patient is regularly taking pain medication. It usually comes on quickly and may last from a few minutes to an hour. Many patients experience a number of episodes of breakthrough pain each day.
Breakthrough cancer pain can result from the cancer or cancer treatment, or it may occur during a certain activity (e.g., walking, dressing, coughing). It also can occur unexpectedly, without a preceding incident or clear cause. Breakthrough pain usually is treated with strong, short-acting pain medications that work faster than persistent pain medications.
Fentanyl Citrate Quick Dissolving Tablet is now available in the Philippines. It is the first and only Rapid Onset Opioid in the Philippine market indicated specifically for Breakthrough Cancer Pain in adult patients who are already using opioid therapy for chronic cancer pain. It is a sublingual tablet which dissolves rapidly under the tongue in 88 seconds and provides significant pain relief in as fast as 10 minutes. Can only be prescribed by a licensed physician. Consult a doctor first if you or any of your love one is suffering from a Breakthrough Cancer Pain.
Now, cancer patients who suffer from Breakthrough Cancer Pain do not have to miss those special moments in their lives.