Cancer Home > Liver Cancer Pain

It is common for pain to occur in people who have liver cancer, either as a result of the tumor itself or as a side effect of treatment. Doctors can help patients manage or relieve pain associated with this type of cancer by using medication, radiation treatment, or nerve blocks. Also, the healthcare team may suggest alternative ways to manage pain, including relaxation techniques, acupuncture, and massage therapy.

Pain and Liver Cancer: An Overview

Pain is a common problem for people with liver cancer. The tumor can cause pain by pressing against nerves and other organs. Also, therapies for liver cancer may cause discomfort.
 
The patient's doctor or a specialist in pain control can help relieve or reduce pain in several ways:
 
  • Pain medicine: Medicines often can relieve liver cancer pain. (These medicines may make people drowsy and constipated, but resting and taking laxatives can help.)
     
  • Radiation: High-energy rays can help relieve pain by shrinking the tumor.
     
  • Nerve block: The doctor may inject alcohol into the area around certain nerves in the abdomen to block the pain associated with liver cancer.
     

Alternative Treatments for Liver Cancer Pain

The healthcare team may suggest other ways to relieve or reduce liver cancer pain. For example, massage, acupuncture, or acupressure may be used along with other approaches. Also, the patient may learn to relieve pain through relaxation techniques, such as listening to slow music or breathing slowly and comfortably.
 
Written by/reviewed by:
Last reviewed by: Arthur Schoenstadt, MD
Last updated/reviewed:
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