Editor-in-Chief: Alaa Abd-Elsayed, MD, PhD
BACKGROUND: Pain is a common symptom associated with cancer and can greatly compromise quality of life, motivation, and further treatments. Intrathecal pump (ITP) offers improved pain scores and clinical outcomes, while reducing the adverse effects of systemic analgesics.
CASE REPORT: A 29-year-old woman with neurofibromatosis type 1 had a malignant peripheral nerve sheath tumor in her right thigh surgically resected. However, one month later, metastatic lesions were found throughout her body. Despite chemotherapy, the disease spread and pain became severe resulting in multiple hospitalizations and halting treatment. Multimodal analgesia was pursued, including regional anesthesia, but she was unable to tolerate the adverse effects of systemic opioids. For long-term analgesia, ITP was pursued, which significantly improved her pain control and quality of life.
CONCLUSIONS: In advanced stages of cancer, we highlight the significant benefits ITP offers with improved quality of life and reduced medication side-effect profiles vs systemic analgesics.
KEY WORDS: Intrathecal pump, regional anesthesia, palliative care, cancer, chronic pain, opioids