breakthrough pain

noun

Medical Definition of breakthrough pain

: a transient, usually severe episode of pain occurring in individuals (such as cancer patients) being treated for chronic pain Breakthrough pain describes a temporary pain that cancer patients may experience even if they are on other pain pills. The pain can flare from just a few seconds to several hours.— Ken Alltucker, The Arizona Republic In fact, only 42% of the physicians administered pain medication appropriately, and 80% did not prescribe any medication for breakthrough pain, which occurs frequently in cancer patients.— Stuart L. Nightingale, The Journal of the American Medical Association

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Cite this Entry

“Breakthrough pain.” Merriam-Webster.com Medical Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/medical/breakthrough%20pain. Accessed 19 Aug. 2022.

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