Indian Journal of Palliative Care
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 ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Year : 2017  |  Volume : 23  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 282--286

Home-based application of sphenopalatine ganglion block for head and neck cancer pain management


Department of Palliative Medicine, Gujarat Cancer and Research Institute, Ahmedabad, Gujarat, India

Correspondence Address:
Priti R Sanghavi
15, Arunodaysociety, St Xaviers College Corner, Navrangpura, Ahmedabad - 380 009, Gujarat
India
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/IJPC.IJPC_39_17

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Background: Head and neck cancer pain is intractable and difficult to manage. Many a times it is difficult to treat with oral opioids and adjuvants. Aim: This study aims to study the effects of transnasal sphenopalatine ganglion block (SPGB), administered using cotton swab/ear bud by patients' caretaker, at home, for pain management. Study Design: This is a prospective, single-arm observational study conducted on 100 head and neck cancer patients, from January 2014 to December 2015. Patients and caretaker were given a demonstration of the procedure using sterile cotton swab/ear buds. They were advised to repeat the procedure when their visual analog score (VAS) was more than 5. They continued with the oral analgesics. They kept the records of pre- and post-procedure pain score (VAS), the frequency of repetition, ease of performance of procedure, and morphine requirement. A paired t-test (SPSS software) was used for statistical analysis. Results: A significant reduction in pain was noted by a decrease in mean VAS from 8.57 ± 1.31 to 2.46 ± 1.23 (P < 0.0001), immediately on first administration. The mean duration of analgesia was 4.95 ± 3.43 days. Pre- and post-procedure mean morphine requirement were 128.2 ± 84.64 and 133.8 ± 81.93 (P > 0.05) mg per day, at the end of 2 months. Ease of performance was observed in 88 patients. Conclusion: The home-based application of SPGB is an easy, safe, and cost-effective method to manage cancer pain. It provides excellent immediate pain relief with a minimum side effect. It can be performed bilaterally, repeatedly and even with a feeding tube in place.






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