Pediatric Cancer Pain Management

  • Stephen L. Long
  • Anurag K. AgrawalEmail author


Pain in pediatric oncology patients can be secondary to the underlying tumor, due to treatment-related effects of chemotherapy and radiation therapy, or procedure-related. Most pediatric oncology patients can be appropriately treated without the need for interventional pain management using nonopioid and opioid agents. The necessity of interventional measures has mainly been found in patients with solid tumors with metastases to the spinal nerve roots, nerve plexus, or large peripheral nerves. Here we discuss developmental aspects in the assessment and management of pediatric cancer pain, causes of treatment-related pain, and management strategies for refractory pain that is not well-controlled with high-dose opioid therapy both during treatment and for end-stage disease. Practitioners must be aware of modalities including anesthetic agents, interventional procedures, complementary and alternative therapies, and end-of-life measures including palliative radiation and sedation for which there is an evidence basis in pediatric oncology patients.


Pain management Pain measurement Palliative care Pediatrics Complementary therapies 


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© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of AnesthesiologyUCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital OaklandOaklandUSA
  2. 2.Department of Hematology/OncologyUCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital OaklandOaklandUSA

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