Control of chronic pain in very advanced cancer patients with morphine hydrochloride administered by oral, rectal and sublingual route. Clinical report and preliminary results on morphine pharmacokinetics.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: CONTEXT: Perinatal palliative care is an area of increasing focus among clinicians supporting newborns and their families. Although not every newborn will survive the neonatal period, assuring their comfort and quality of life remains an imperative for their care providers. It can be challenging to administer medications such as opioids in a minimally invasive yet effective manner. OBJECTIVES: To describe the experience using intranasal (IN) fentanyl in the management of distress in a case series of 11 dying neonates. METHODS: A retrospective chart review was undertaken of 58 consecutive referrals of newborns and infants aged six months or younger between November 2006 and July 2010 to the Winnipeg Regional Health Authority Pediatric Palliative Care Service to determine how often IN fentanyl was used and review documented responses after the medication. RESULTS: Of 58 referrals, IN fentanyl was used in 11 patients, in all cases for concerns regarding respiratory distress. Chart documentation indicated that fentanyl was tolerated well, with no circumstances of drug-related apnea and no occurrences of chest wall rigidity. In most cases, labored breathing and restlessness settled after medication administration. The average time from administration of the last dose of fentanyl until death was 61 minutes. CONCLUSION: We found IN fentanyl, which can be administered in a variety of care settings, to be a minimally invasive means of palliating distress in dying newborns and infants. No adverse events related to its use were noted.
Journal of pain and symptom management 09/2012; · 2.42 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The European Palliative Care Research Collaboration is updating the EAPC recommendations on opioids in cancer pain management. A systematic literature search on Medline on the use of alternative routes for opioid application identified 242 papers, with 72 publications included in the final evaluation. Two or more alternative routes of opioid application were compared in 18 papers with a total of 674 patients. The best evidence base was available for the subcutaneous route. A comparison of subcutaneous and intravenous routes found no differences, confirming both routes as feasible, effective and safe. Efficacy and safety of the rectal route was comparable to the parenteral route. The side effect profile seemed to be very similar for the subcutaneous, intravenous, rectal or transdermal routes. Local side effects were reported for rectal application as well as for subcutaneous and transdermal administration. In conclusion, the systematic review found good evidence that subcutaneous administration of morphine or other opioids is an effective alternative for cancer patients if oral treatment is not possible. However, for a number of patients intravenous, rectal or transdermal therapy will offer a good alternative to the subcutaneous route. The review found no significant differences in efficacy or side effects between the alternative application routes.
Palliative Medicine 07/2011; 25(5):578-96. · 2.61 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: One of the World Health Organization's (WHO) top priorities is cancer pain relief. Simple guidelines for assessing and relieving pain have been developed, published, and field tested. WHO has concluded that there is enough knowledge currently to permit an approach to cancer pain relief that can be implemented on a worldwide basis. This information, when used correctly, allows pain control in 75% or more of patients with cancer pain. However, numerous barriers prevent the application of this knowledge and the achievement of cancer pain relief. Assessing the patient's cancer pain and effective use of analgesic drugs, especially opioid agents, are hampered by a lack of education of health-care professionals and the fact that the pain sensation is entirely subjective. Unfortunately, these factors often result in pain management being determined on the basis of personal opinion rather than scientific knowledge. This leads to inconsistent and often inadequate care of patients with cancer pain. The extent of the cancer pain problem and the WHO analgesic-ladder approach to cancer pain relief are reviewed along with recommendations from the American Pain Society. Lack of education of health-care professionals is discussed, focusing on pain assessment, under-use of oral and rectal routes of administration, fears of addiction, and titration of doses of opioid drugs. Simple strategies for beginning to correct these problems are presented.
Cancer 06/2006; 70(S3):1438 - 1449. · 5.20 Impact Factor
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