Pain Management in Children With Cancer Using World Health Organization Guidelines at a Tertiary Cancer Center in Rural India

M. S. Biji, V. Vinayagamoorthy, T. K. Jithin, Vineetha Raghavan, Kalaiselvi Selvaraj, Karthickeyan Duraisamy, Kalpita Shringarpure, S. S. Abhinaa, Vanitha Priya Deenathayalan, Kedar Mehta, Priya Rathi, Lulu Mathews

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Management of cancer pain among children is a difficult process due to the way they perceive pain, their dependence on parents, complexity of assessment, and limited availability of safe analgesics. Pain among children with cancer is still a less explored problem in India. This descriptive study was carried out in a tertiary cancer center to explore the characteristics of pain and its management among the children with cancer. We analyzed children diagnosed with hematologic malignancies, aged 4–18 years, admitted between January 2013 and December 2017. This retrospective cohort study involved the review of patient records available at the medical records department. During the study period, there were 290 admission episodes, of which 93 (32.1%) episodes were associated with pain. Of these 93 episodes, 14 (15%) were primarily for pain management. Step I analgesic was utilized in the majority (83%) of the admission episodes involving younger age group (4–9 years) children, whereas for the older age group (10–18 years) Step 2 analgesic (tramadol) was utilized in 29 (58%) episodes, and this was found to be statistically significant (P <.001). Only in 9 (9.7%) episodes Step 3 analgesic was utilized. A significant proportion of children with hematologic malignancies had pain episodes, and these episodes in older age group children were managed with weak opioids.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)15-21
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Pain and Palliative Care Pharmacotherapy
Volume33
Issue number1-2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 03-04-2019

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine
  • Pharmacology (medical)

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