Cancer pain professionals

Different health professionals work together to help manage your pain. This is called a multidisciplinary team (MDT). The MDT may include some of the professionals listed below. If your pain is not well controlled, you may want to ask your GP or palliative care physician for a referral to a pain medicine specialist.

  • General practitioner (GP) – takes care of your general health and coordinates specialist treatment
  • Medical oncologist – prescribes and coordinates the course of chemotherapy (anti-cancer medicine)
  • Radiation oncologist – prescribes and coordinates the course of radiotherapy to treat painful areas
  • Surgeon – performs surgery to remove tumours or unblock affected organs
  • Palliative care team – assesses physical, practical, emotional and spiritual needs, and coordinates care
  • Pain medicine specialist – specialises in treating all types of pain, particularly severe or difficult pain
  • Nurses and nurse practitioners – administer medicines and provide support during all stages of your treatment
  • Pharmacist – dispenses medicines and can give advice about drugs, dose and side effects
  • Physiotherapist and occupational therapist – help you with physical and practical problems
  • Psychologist – assesses emotional factors that affect your pain and provides psychological methods of pain management
  • Counsellor, social worker and pastoral care worker – help you with emotional and spiritual issues and can advise on support services.

This information was last reviewed in September 2015
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