Pain and myeloma Infoguide

This Infoguide contains information about pain in myeloma, including its causes, the psychological impacts, how pain is treated, and living with pain. It is written for anyone affected by myeloma, including patients, carers, family and friends. 

This Infoguide covers key questions and topics about pain in myeloma, including:  

  • What is pain? 
  • Describing your pain 
  • Psychological impact of pain 
  • Causes of pain in myeloma 
  • Treatment of pain 
  • Living with pain 
  • Top 10 tips for coping with pain in myeloma 
  • Information for carers 

Key points you can read about in this Infoguide include:  

  • Pain can have a significant impact on the quality of life of myeloma patients, and is the most common symptom of myeloma.  
  • Pain can have psychological and emotional impacts, and can worsen other factors such as fatigue and anxiety. These other factors can also make pain feel worse too 
  • The most common causes of pain in myeloma are bone disease; nerve damage or pressure on the nerves (including peripheral neuropathy); infection; fatigue; side effects of anti-myeloma treatments; and tests and procedures 
  • Your healthcare team will work to find the pain treatment that works best for you, depending on the nature and cause of your pain. Some of the most often used treatments are: treating the myeloma itself; painkillers (also called analgesic drugs); treatments for nerve pain; treatments for myeloma bone disease; and radiotherapy  
  • Painkillers include simple non-opioid painkillers such as paracetamol; weak opioid painkillers such as co-codamol and dihydrocodeine; and strong opioids such as morphine and high-dose tramadol. Treatments for nerve pain include gabapentin and amitriptyline 
  • Therapies such as mind-body therapies and gentle massage can also be helpful  
  • If your pain is severe and difficult to control, you may be referred to a pain management or palliative care team 
  • It is important to stay ahead with pain control – stick to the dose and schedule of pain control that you have been prescribed. Don’t wait until pain is severe before tackling it 
  • Tips to help in living with pain include asking for help when needed; balancing rest and activity; talking about your feelings; and finding things you enjoy that relax you 

Pain and myeloma Infoguide

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