Prevalence and incidence of chronic pain with or without neuropathic characteristics in patients with cancer.

Bouhassira D, Luporsi E, Krakowski I.

Pain. 2017 Jun;158(6):1118-1125.

A prospective observational study in France recruited 1805 cancer patients attending out-patients for cancer treatment from 12 oncology units. A clinical examination, DN4 questionnaire and Brief Pain Inventory were used to detect and characterise the pain. Chronic pain characterised as due to the tumour, cancer treatment, or not related to cancer. The overall prevalence of chronic pain was reported as 28%, with 21% of these patients having characteristics neuropathic pain; an overall prevalence of 5%. Pain with neuropathic characteristics was more commonly reported by patients with lung, breast, or head and neck cancers. Patents with a neuropathic element to their pain reported a higher pain intensity and pain interference. This study also looked at the incidence of chronic pain in patients who had no chronic pain at first visit but subsequently developed pain. Three months after initial assessment, the incidence of chronic pain varied from 12% to 20% and at 6 months, from 20% to 28%.

Composed by Elaine Boland.

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