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Complementary Medicine
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AskedPublicly Submitted Question
1/9/2017Hello,

I'm not sure if this is the right forum for this question, but I thought I'd give it a try.

My mother, who is in her late 50s, won her battle against breast cancer about 11 years ago. However, during a surgery this past summer doctors found a reoccurrence in the form of an estrogen-positive tumor in her abdomen. She's been receiving a treatment of Femara and Ibrance since August to shrink the tumor. Since the summer -- during which she had surgery to fix her ureter, which was constricted by the tumor -- she has been taking prescription pain medicine like hydrocodone/acephetamine, oxycontin, and now fentynal for pain management. During the past three or so months she has begun experiencing severe abdominal pain “attacks” that come on suddenly and seemingly occur randomly. The pain often occurs in the evening, and seems to be worsened by fiber -- when she eats a meal high in fiber it seems to give her more pain than one without it. However, she's been limiting her fiber intake recently and still gets the pain attacks. Her doctors keep prescribing more pain killers to combat this pain, but I'm wondering if her symptoms could indicate narcotic bowel syndrome, or a gastrointestinal problem? Her oncologist believes that her pain is due to the tumor, but this pain has come on recently, while the tumor has diagnosed for over six months now. She often gets up and walks around when she’s experiencing a pain attack, because she says that sitting still makes it worse. She’s also been having occasional bouts of nausea. Does anyone have any ideas on what could be causing this pain, or any websites/forums I could turn to for help? Her doctors have not been extremely helpful, and any help you can give is appreciated.

Thanks much.
RepliedJHU's Breast Center Reply
1/10/2017the tumor could be growing, pressing on nerves. however, the person she needs to see is a palliative care physician who solely specializes in symptom management, most in particular, pain.

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