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    Prostate Cancer Pain: A Guide for You and Your Family

    Important Facts About Cancer Pain Treatment continued...

    6. Most people do not get "high" or lose control when they take cancer pain medicines as prescribed by a doctor.

    Some pain medicines can cause you to feel sleepy when you first take them. This feeling usually goes away within a few days. Sometimes you become drowsy because, with the relief of the pain, you are able to catch up on the sleep you missed when you were in pain. On occasion, people get dizzy or feel confused when they take pain medicines. Tell your doctor or nurse if this happens to you. Changing your dose or type of medicine can usually solve the problem.

    7. Side effects from medicines can be managed or often prevented.

    Most pain medicines will cause constipation, nausea and vomiting, or drowsiness. Your doctor or nurse can help you manage these side effects. These problems may go away after a few days of taking the medicine. Many side effects can be managed by changing the medicine or the dose or times when the medicine is taken. In some cases, additional medication is needed to minimize the side effects.

    8. Your body does not become immune to pain medicine.

    Stronger medicines should not be saved for "later." Pain should be treated early. It is important to take whatever medicine is needed. You do not need to save the stronger medicines for later. If your body gets used to the medicine you are taking, your medicine may not relieve the pain as well as it once did. This is called tolerance. Tolerance may be a problem with cancer pain treatment because of the length of time you are on the medicine. But the amount of medicine can be changed or other medicines can be added.

    When pain is not treated properly, you may be:

    • Tired
    • Depressed
    • Angry
    • Worried
    • Lonely
    • Stressed

    When cancer pain is managed properly, you can:

    Developing a Plan for Pain Control

    WebMD Medical Reference

    Reviewed by Gerald Chodak, MD on May 06, 2016
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