Question My 80 year old mother is suffering from Lung Cancer and is on Gefitinib since last 2 years.She is so far fine with no breathing trouble,wheezing,cough etc.But she has developed Shoulder Pain before Cancer was detected.As the shoulder pain is aggravating NSAID drugs are not working satisfactorily any more,Transdermal Patch (Brupenorphine)was given but it caused severe side effects like vomiting/vertigo.Under this condition to give relief whether TENS/EMS(electrical nerve/muscle stimulation)can be given.There is apprehension that this stimulation may aggregate Cancer cells.Please opine.
Answer You can try TENS; it doesn't do anything to the cancer. However, I would not expect it to work. Shoulder pain is sometimes related to tumor growing in the top of the lung, and if that's the case, some radiation may be helpful. But don't be worried about TENS. There's no evidence that it aggravates lung cancer cells.
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I have been a practicing medical oncologist for 36 years, and have been chief of service at a major medical center for 25 years. I've also done research in cancer treatments.
Organizations American Society of Clinical Oncology
Publications New England Journal of Medicine
American Journal of Medicine
Journal of the American Society of Clinical Oncology
Education/Credentials MD, Stanford University
Internal Medicine residency, St. Louis University School of Medicine, St. Louis, MO
Medical Oncology Fellowship, Roswell Park Cancer Institute, Buffalo, NY
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