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Treating Persistent Pain After Breast Cancer Surgery

  • James S. Khan
  • Karim S. Ladha
  • Faraj Abdallah
  • Hance ClarkeEmail author
Therapy in Practice

Abstract

Breast cancer is one of the most commonly diagnosed cancers among women, and since the prognosis of breast cancer has substantially improved in past decades, complications of management are becoming increasingly apparent. Persistent pain lasting greater than 3 months after breast cancer surgery is unfortunately a common complication affecting approximately 30% of patients after tumour resection. Persistent breast cancer pain has neuropathic features and is typically mild-to-moderate in intensity, with approximately 10% suffering from severe pain. There is an increasing need to prevent persistent pain through the use of transitional pain programmes and perioperative interventions, and to identify novel treatment modalities to reduce suffering in those who unfortunately develop persistent pain. This review serves to provide an overview on persistent pain after breast cancer surgery, its pathophysiology, and current management strategies.

Notes

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of interest

JSK, KSL, FA, HC have no conflicts to disclose.

Funding

No funding was received for this work. Funding for the Transitional Pain Service is provided by the Ontario Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care. H.C. and K.L are supported by a Merit Awards from the Department of Anaesthesia, University of Toronto.

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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Anaesthesia and Pain ManagementMount Sinai HospitalTorontoCanada
  2. 2.Department of AnaesthesiaUniversity of TorontoTorontoCanada
  3. 3.Department of AnaesthesiaSt. Michaels’ HospitalTorontoCanada
  4. 4.Department of AnaesthesiaOttawa UniversityOttawaCanada
  5. 5.Department of Anaesthesia and Pain Management, Pain Research UnitToronto General HospitalTorontoCanada
  6. 6.Transitional Pain Service, Department of Anaesthesia and Pain ManagementToronto General HospitalTorontoCanada
  7. 7.University of Toronto Centre for the Study of PainUniversity of TorontoTorontoCanada

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