Overcoming cancer and restoring your health is more challenging when pain drains your energy and makes restorative sleep impossible. At Cincinnati Comprehensive Pain Center, Humam Akbik, MD, offers cancer pain treatment that’s unique to his practice. Dr. Akbik works closely with each cancer patient, developing customized interventional treatments that target the specific cause of their pain. To schedule an appointment, call the office in Fairfield, Ohio, or complete the online contact form and a team member will call to talk about your pain-relief needs.
Cancer Pain Q & A
What types of pain affect patients with cancer?
The pain associated with cancer is often hard to treat because it comes from numerous sources. Pain is caused by the tumor, but it’s also an unavoidable side effect of the treatments needed to cure your cancer. Two common causes of cancer pain include:
Chemotherapy, vitamin deficiencies, the tumor, and coexisting health problems such as diabetes and infections can all lead to painful nerve damage, known as neuropathy.
Injuries from radiation and chemotherapy
Chemotherapy and radiation often cause mouth sores, while radiation may lead to tissue damage near the area being treated.
How does interventional medicine treat cancer pain?
As a pain management and interventional medicine specialist, Dr. Akbik offers therapies that cancer patients won’t receive from their oncologist or other members of their cancer treatment team. Interventional treatments are effective because they target the nerves carrying pain signals to your brain.
You experience pain when nerves pick up chemical changes from damaged tissues. Then the nerves relay a signal through your spinal cord to your brain. You only feel pain after your brain interprets the nerve signals.
When the appropriate nerves are blocked with interventional treatments, they can’t send pain signals to your brain. As a result, these treatments can significantly diminish many types of cancer pain.
What treatments might I receive for cancer pain?
These are a few examples of the treatments provided by Dr. Akbik:
Dr. Akbik injects medications near the specific nerves responsible for transmitting pain signals. Using ultrasound and fluoroscopic imaging to see and guide the needle, Dr. Akbik delivers an anesthetic for quick but short-lived pain relief and a steroid medication that provides long-lasting relief.
Using technology such as radiofrequency treatments, Dr. Akbik applies heat to the targeted nerves. This creates a temporary wound that blocks nerve signals for an extended time until the nerve ultimately heals.
Dr. Akbik offers several nerve stimulation options. They all use mild electrical impulses to block or mask pain signals.
An intrathecal pain pump is a small medical device that holds pain-relieving medication. Dr. Akbik implants the pump under your skin, then runs a flexible catheter from the pump to your spinal cord. The catheter delivers medication directly into your cerebrospinal fluid for quick relief from a very small dose of medication.
To receive help for your cancer pain, call Cincinnati Comprehensive Pain Center or request a call from a team member by completing the online form.