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  1. Pain relief for metastatic bone disease


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Pain relief for metastatic bone disease


Metastatic bone disease happens when cancer cells from the original tumor area travel through the body and move into the bones. These areas of new tumor growth in the bone are called metastases and can spread throughout the skeletal system. At present, there is no cure for metastatic bone disease; however there are medications available to cope with associated pain.
Metastron is an injection developed to relieve the pain in bones caused by metastatic bone disease. Metastron is similar to calcium chemically. It locates all areas where bones are absorbing extra calcium and causing pain, then it stays there for many weeks, steadily providing pain relief.

For many years doctors have used certain types of radiation to relieve the pain experienced by sufferers of metastatic bone disease. Metastron is a development in this type of treatment. Metastron contains small amounts of a specially selected form of radioactive strontium, chosen because almost all its radiation is given to the area where it is absorbed. This allows it to deliver therapy precisely where it is needed.

Effects
At first you will feel no effect at all. You may even feel a slight increase in pain during the two or three days after injection. This is quite normal and you may need to increase your does of pain killers slightly until this subsides. After about two weeks, sometimes a little longer, you should begin to feel the pain diminish. This reduction in pain should continue and the effect should then last for several months.

The injection will not prevent you from doing anything that you were already doing. As Metastron begins to relieve the pain, you may find that you can tackle activities that were previously too difficult or too painful. Usually there is no problem with this, but be careful not to overdo it. If you are in any doubt, seek your doctor's advice. Metastron will have no effect on your ability to drive, or to use machinery.

Side Effects
Normally, no side effects will be noticed. You can eat and drink normally and there is no need to avoid alcohol unless you have already been advised to do so. There may be a slight fall in the number of cells in your blood and your doctor will want to carry out routine tests. This is quite normal. If you have any concerns you should of course talk to your doctor.

Pain-killers and other treatments
Your doctor may advise that you should continue to take your pain-killing medicine until the pain starts to subside. He may then suggest that you begin to reduce the dose gradually. You may want to continue reducing the dose and eventually you may not need pain killers at all. If you have nay doubts, consult your doctor.
Your doctor will advise on what other treatments, if any, you should take. You may have been receiving hormone injections or tablets, and your doctor may wish you to continue with these.

Precautions
The effects of Metastron within the body are limited to the small painful area in which it concentrates. Because of this it will not cause any harm to other people through bodily contact.
During the first week after injection, Metastron will be present in your blood and urine. It is therefore important that you should take the following common sense precautions:

  1. Where a normal toilet is available, it should be used in preference to a urinal. The toilet should be flushed twice.

  2. Wipe up any spilled urine with a tissue and flush it away.

  3. Ensure that you always wash your hands after using the toilet.

  4. Immediately wash any linen or clothes which become stained with urine. Wash them separately from other clothes, and rinse thoroughly.

  5. If you should cut yourself, wash away any spilled blood.