Chronic Pain in Cancer Survivors: A Closer Look at Prevalence

A new research study published in JAMA Oncology has found that about 35% of cancer survivors live with chronic pain. One of the study’s authors is Dr. Robert Sidlow, MD, MBA, Head, Division of Survivorship and Supportive Care; Associate Chair, Patient Care Operations at MSK.

Dr. Robert Sidlow Image credit: MSK Digital Assets Library

Corresponding author Changchuan Jiang, MD, MPH, a medical resident at Mount Sinai St. Luke’s and Mount Sinai West, told Science Daily that the study is the “first comprehensive estimate of chronic pain prevalence among cancer survivors” and that the study results “highlight the important unmet needs of pain management in the large, and growing cancer survivorship community.”

The study also found that the prevalence of chronic pain is highest among certain types of cancer survivors – including bone (54.0%), kidney (52.3%), throat-pharynx (47.9%), and uterine (44.5%) cancers.

Jiang, C., Wang, H., Wang, Q., Luo, Y., Sidlow, R., & Han, X. (2019). Prevalence of Chronic Pain and High-Impact Chronic Pain in Cancer Survivors in the United States. JAMA oncology.