Post-chemo pain may occur in the head, stomach, muscles, or nerves. The pain will usually lessen with time, but some people may end up with permanent nerve damage.
Although it is an effective treatment for many types of cancer, chemotherapy often causes side effects. Although specific side effects may be predictable for certain classes of treatment, each person’s experience with chemotherapy is unique. Chemotherapy can cause pain for some people, including headaches, muscle pain, stomach pain, and pain from nerve damage, such as burning, numbness, or shooting pains.
Post-chemo pain usually goes away over time, but some people may have symptoms for months or years after chemotherapy has finished due to permanent damage to the nerves.
Doctors can manage pain by treating the source of the pain; changing the perception of pain, usually with pain-relieving medications; or interfering with pain signals sent to the brain through spinal treatments or nerve blocks.