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Palliative care pain management

What is it?

More than 65% of palliative care patients experience a form of pain from mild to severe, depending on their specific condition. People may notice more pain as they reach the final years of life. Most pain can be controlled or relieved.

It is normal to feel worried or scared about the pain. There are many options to manage your pain so you can feel as comfortable as possible.

What will my healthcare team do?

Your healthcare team will aim to treat the pain. Common pain-relief methods include medication, hot packs, physiotherapy, massage, relaxation and exercises.

Ask your GP about how you may be able to avoid or reduce things that make the pain worse. Your GP may also talk to you about advance care planning.

What questions could I ask my doctor?

  • What could be making my pain worse?
  • How can I reduce my pain naturally?
  • Who can I talk to if I'm struggling to cope?

What can I do?

Talk to your GP about how to manage your pain. Discuss the goals of pain relief – sometimes it is not possible to be pain free all the time.

Look into ways you can stay relaxed, like massage or gentle exercise. Ask about getting support to help you move and stay as mobile as possible.


What supports are available?

  • Community palliative care nursing and PEACH programs

    There are palliative care clinics in all of the South Western Sydney local hospitals. There are also community palliative care nursing and PEACH programs (home support packages).

    These services can come to your home. Your GP is able to refer you. Talk to your GP about other types of supports that can help you emotionally and spiritually during this difficult time.

    If you are a carer, talk to your GP about respite care or home care. You can access supports through local councils.

Where can I learn more?

  • Palliative Care Australia: Pain Management

    Learn more about pain management.

Important: This information is to be viewed by someone who has received a diagnosis from their doctor. It is not designed to be used to diagnose a condition or as a substitute for ongoing medical care.

Health Resource Directory factsheets are endorsed by South Western Sydney PHN’s Community Advisory Committee and local GPs

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