Are additional symptoms common in patients with cancer who are experiencing pain?
Yes, patients with cancer pain report significant rates of anhedonia, fatigue, low energy levels, trouble falling or staying asleep, cognitive impairment, dyspnea either at rest or with minor exertion, dry mouth, indigestion, nausea/vomiting, and drowsiness or excessive somnolence. Dysphoria is a common comorbid problem in cancer patients, both as preexisting or new-onset depression. Debility and impaired mobility coupled with potent analgesics (especially opioids) make constipation a very common symptom in cancer patients. A multimodal approach that takes into account all potential sources of distress is therefore recommended for patients with cancer pain.