Cancer Pain Can Be Treated: New Patient Guidelines Help Patients and Physicians Discuss Options

Apr 03, 2001, 01:00 ET from American Cancer Society

    NEW YORK, April 3 /PRNewswire/ -- About one-third of the cancer patients
 in the U.S. suffer from significant pain.  Pain can affect a patient in many
 ways.  It can cause a reduction in activity, prevent sleep, and inhibit
 eating.  Pain can also make a patient feel afraid and depressed.
     Today, a new resource was made available to help cancer patients work more
 effectively with their doctors to make informed decisions about their
 available pain treatment options.  The National Comprehensive Cancer Network
 (NCCN) and the American Cancer Society (ACS) announced the availability of
 their first supportive care patient guideline, Cancer Pain Treatment
 Guidelines for Patients.
     "Patients have a right to appropriate pain assessment and management. This
 information will facilitate the process of informed decision-making by
 patients in collaboration with physicians and help assure that patients
 achieve the best possible pain relief," said Dr. Richard Payne, chief, pain
 & palliative care service, department of neurology, at Memorial
 Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center (MSKCC) in New York.  MSKCC is one of 19 NCCN
 member institutions.  "Often this pain can be substantially reduced or
 eliminated and patients can be made more comfortable during their battles with
 cancer," he added.
     Misperceptions about the likelihood of drug addiction and abuse among
 cancer patients have resulted in avoidance of appropriate pain control by some
 patients.  "Reactions to recent disturbing media coverage of drug addicts and
 painkiller abuse may ironically interfere with important efforts to
 appropriately manage cancer patients' pain," said Robert C. Young, MD,
 president-elect of the American Cancer Society and president of Fox Chase
 Cancer Center, another NCCN member institution.  "In fact, when pain medicines
 are given and taken appropriately, patients rarely become addicted to them.
     "Undertreatment of pain is a significant public health problem in our
 country, but the NCCN/ACS patient pain guidelines will give cancer patients
 and their families solid understanding and reasonable expectations to make
 them informed collaborators with their physicians in managing pain and
 preserving a good quality of life," added Dr. Young.
     The patient guidelines are the result of a collaborative effort between
 NCCN and ACS and are derived directly from the professional oncology practice
 guidelines developed for physicians by the NCCN.  The patient guidelines also
 provide background information on cancer pain, its causes, various treatment
 options and a glossary of terms.
     "The NCCN/ACS Cancer Pain Treatment Guidelines for Patients is one of a
 series developed by the NCCN/ACS partnership. At this time, the NCCN/ACS
 patient guideline series includes breast cancer, prostate cancer and colon and
 rectal cancers. We provide these guidelines in plain, understandable language
 for patients and their families," said William T. McGivney, PhD, CEO of the
 NCCN. "We intend to develop patient guidelines for the ten most frequently
 occurring cancers and the major supportive care areas."   Upcoming patient
 guidelines include lung cancer, ovarian cancer, myeloma, non-melanoma skin
 cancer, nausea and vomiting, and cancer-related fatigue.  The publications are
 also being translated into Spanish.
     To order a free copy of NCCN/ACS Cancer Pain Treatment Guidelines for
 Patients or any of the other NCCN patient guidelines, contact The National
 Comprehensive Cancer Network (1-888-909-NCCN) or The American Cancer Society
 (1-800-ACS-2345).  You may also visit their web sites at http://www.nccn.org
 or http://www.cancer.org.  Requests by e-mail may be made to
 patientinformation@nccn.org.
     Founded in 1995, the NCCN is dedicated to advancing the missions of its
 member institutions in education, research and patient care. As part of its
 mission, the NCCN serves as the most authoritative source of cancer care
 information for health professionals based upon the expertise and input of its
 world-renowned clinicians.
     For more than 85 years, the public has relied on the American Cancer
 Society for accurate, up-to-date information about cancer and its treatment.
 The American Cancer Society is the nationwide, community based voluntary
 health organization dedicated to eliminating cancer as a major health problem
 by preventing cancer, saving lives and diminishing suffering from cancer
 through research, education, advocacy and service.
 
     NCCN Member Institutions:
 
     City of Hope Cancer Center,  Los Angeles, CA
      Press information contact:  Taylor Mayo      Phone:  800-888-5323
     Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Boston, MA
      Press information contact:  Janet Haley      Phone:  617-632-5665
     Duke Comprehensive Cancer Center, Durham, NC
      Press information contact:  Joanna Downer    Phone:  919-684-4148
     Fox Chase Cancer Center,  Philadelphia, PA
      Press information contact:  Karen Carter     Phone:  215-728-2700
     Johns Hopkins Oncology Center, Baltimore, MD
      Press information contact:  Vanessa Wasta    Phone:  410-955-1287
     Huntsman Cancer Institute at the University of Utah,
      Salt Lake City, Utah
      Press information contact:  Shelley Thomas   Phone:  801-587-7740
     Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, Seattle, WA
      Press information contact:  Susan Edmonds    Phone:  206-667-2896
     Arthur G. James Cancer Hospital and Richard J. Solove Research
      Institute at the Ohio State University, Columbus, OH
      Press information contact:  Pegge Ledingham  Phone:  614-293-6439
     Robert H. Lurie Comprehensive Cancer Center
      of Northwestern University, Chicago, IL
      Press information contact:  Elizabeth Crown  Phone:  312-503-8928
     Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, New York, New York
      Press information contact:  Esther Carver    Phone:  212-639-3573
     H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center and Research Institute at the University
     of South Florida, Tampa, FL
      Press information contact:  Matt Novak       Phone:  813-632-1478
     Roswell Park Cancer Institute, Buffalo, NY
     Press information contact:  Deborah  Pettibone     Phone:  716-845-8593
     St. Jude Children's Research Hospital, Memphis, TN
      Press information contact:  Deirdre Malone   Phone:  901-495-2434
     Stanford Hospital and Clinics, Stanford, CA
      Press information contact:  Ruthann Richter  Phone:  650-723-7722
     UCSF Comprehensive Cancer Center, San Francisco, CA
      Press information contact:  Alice Trinkl     Phone:  415-476-2557
     University of Alabama at Birmingham Comprehensive Cancer Center,
      Birmingham, AL
      Press information contact:  Kathleen Roth    Phone:  205-934-0283
     University of Michigan Comprehensive Cancer Center, Ann Arbor, MI
      Press information contact:  Maria White      Phone:  734-936-9584
     UNMC/Eppley Cancer Center at the University of Nebraska Medical Center,
      Omaha, NE
      Press information contact:  Sheri Dunbar     Phone:  402-559-4401
     University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, TX
     Press information contact:  Jane Brust        Phone:  713-792-0655
 
 

SOURCE American Cancer Society
    NEW YORK, April 3 /PRNewswire/ -- About one-third of the cancer patients
 in the U.S. suffer from significant pain.  Pain can affect a patient in many
 ways.  It can cause a reduction in activity, prevent sleep, and inhibit
 eating.  Pain can also make a patient feel afraid and depressed.
     Today, a new resource was made available to help cancer patients work more
 effectively with their doctors to make informed decisions about their
 available pain treatment options.  The National Comprehensive Cancer Network
 (NCCN) and the American Cancer Society (ACS) announced the availability of
 their first supportive care patient guideline, Cancer Pain Treatment
 Guidelines for Patients.
     "Patients have a right to appropriate pain assessment and management. This
 information will facilitate the process of informed decision-making by
 patients in collaboration with physicians and help assure that patients
 achieve the best possible pain relief," said Dr. Richard Payne, chief, pain
 & palliative care service, department of neurology, at Memorial
 Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center (MSKCC) in New York.  MSKCC is one of 19 NCCN
 member institutions.  "Often this pain can be substantially reduced or
 eliminated and patients can be made more comfortable during their battles with
 cancer," he added.
     Misperceptions about the likelihood of drug addiction and abuse among
 cancer patients have resulted in avoidance of appropriate pain control by some
 patients.  "Reactions to recent disturbing media coverage of drug addicts and
 painkiller abuse may ironically interfere with important efforts to
 appropriately manage cancer patients' pain," said Robert C. Young, MD,
 president-elect of the American Cancer Society and president of Fox Chase
 Cancer Center, another NCCN member institution.  "In fact, when pain medicines
 are given and taken appropriately, patients rarely become addicted to them.
     "Undertreatment of pain is a significant public health problem in our
 country, but the NCCN/ACS patient pain guidelines will give cancer patients
 and their families solid understanding and reasonable expectations to make
 them informed collaborators with their physicians in managing pain and
 preserving a good quality of life," added Dr. Young.
     The patient guidelines are the result of a collaborative effort between
 NCCN and ACS and are derived directly from the professional oncology practice
 guidelines developed for physicians by the NCCN.  The patient guidelines also
 provide background information on cancer pain, its causes, various treatment
 options and a glossary of terms.
     "The NCCN/ACS Cancer Pain Treatment Guidelines for Patients is one of a
 series developed by the NCCN/ACS partnership. At this time, the NCCN/ACS
 patient guideline series includes breast cancer, prostate cancer and colon and
 rectal cancers. We provide these guidelines in plain, understandable language
 for patients and their families," said William T. McGivney, PhD, CEO of the
 NCCN. "We intend to develop patient guidelines for the ten most frequently
 occurring cancers and the major supportive care areas."   Upcoming patient
 guidelines include lung cancer, ovarian cancer, myeloma, non-melanoma skin
 cancer, nausea and vomiting, and cancer-related fatigue.  The publications are
 also being translated into Spanish.
     To order a free copy of NCCN/ACS Cancer Pain Treatment Guidelines for
 Patients or any of the other NCCN patient guidelines, contact The National
 Comprehensive Cancer Network (1-888-909-NCCN) or The American Cancer Society
 (1-800-ACS-2345).  You may also visit their web sites at http://www.nccn.org
 or http://www.cancer.org.  Requests by e-mail may be made to
 patientinformation@nccn.org.
     Founded in 1995, the NCCN is dedicated to advancing the missions of its
 member institutions in education, research and patient care. As part of its
 mission, the NCCN serves as the most authoritative source of cancer care
 information for health professionals based upon the expertise and input of its
 world-renowned clinicians.
     For more than 85 years, the public has relied on the American Cancer
 Society for accurate, up-to-date information about cancer and its treatment.
 The American Cancer Society is the nationwide, community based voluntary
 health organization dedicated to eliminating cancer as a major health problem
 by preventing cancer, saving lives and diminishing suffering from cancer
 through research, education, advocacy and service.
 
     NCCN Member Institutions:
 
     City of Hope Cancer Center,  Los Angeles, CA
      Press information contact:  Taylor Mayo      Phone:  800-888-5323
     Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Boston, MA
      Press information contact:  Janet Haley      Phone:  617-632-5665
     Duke Comprehensive Cancer Center, Durham, NC
      Press information contact:  Joanna Downer    Phone:  919-684-4148
     Fox Chase Cancer Center,  Philadelphia, PA
      Press information contact:  Karen Carter     Phone:  215-728-2700
     Johns Hopkins Oncology Center, Baltimore, MD
      Press information contact:  Vanessa Wasta    Phone:  410-955-1287
     Huntsman Cancer Institute at the University of Utah,
      Salt Lake City, Utah
      Press information contact:  Shelley Thomas   Phone:  801-587-7740
     Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, Seattle, WA
      Press information contact:  Susan Edmonds    Phone:  206-667-2896
     Arthur G. James Cancer Hospital and Richard J. Solove Research
      Institute at the Ohio State University, Columbus, OH
      Press information contact:  Pegge Ledingham  Phone:  614-293-6439
     Robert H. Lurie Comprehensive Cancer Center
      of Northwestern University, Chicago, IL
      Press information contact:  Elizabeth Crown  Phone:  312-503-8928
     Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, New York, New York
      Press information contact:  Esther Carver    Phone:  212-639-3573
     H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center and Research Institute at the University
     of South Florida, Tampa, FL
      Press information contact:  Matt Novak       Phone:  813-632-1478
     Roswell Park Cancer Institute, Buffalo, NY
     Press information contact:  Deborah  Pettibone     Phone:  716-845-8593
     St. Jude Children's Research Hospital, Memphis, TN
      Press information contact:  Deirdre Malone   Phone:  901-495-2434
     Stanford Hospital and Clinics, Stanford, CA
      Press information contact:  Ruthann Richter  Phone:  650-723-7722
     UCSF Comprehensive Cancer Center, San Francisco, CA
      Press information contact:  Alice Trinkl     Phone:  415-476-2557
     University of Alabama at Birmingham Comprehensive Cancer Center,
      Birmingham, AL
      Press information contact:  Kathleen Roth    Phone:  205-934-0283
     University of Michigan Comprehensive Cancer Center, Ann Arbor, MI
      Press information contact:  Maria White      Phone:  734-936-9584
     UNMC/Eppley Cancer Center at the University of Nebraska Medical Center,
      Omaha, NE
      Press information contact:  Sheri Dunbar     Phone:  402-559-4401
     University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, TX
     Press information contact:  Jane Brust        Phone:  713-792-0655
 
 SOURCE  American Cancer Society