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Continuous lidocaine infusion for the relief of refractory malignant pain in a terminally ill pediatric cancer patient

Publication year
Massey, G. V.; Pedigo, S.; Dunn, N. L.; Grossman, N. J.; Russell, E. C.

Despite aggressive pain management with opiates, debilitating pain still occurs in a subset of children with terminal cancer. A 5-year-old girl with metastatic retinoblastoma, profound opiate tolerance, and refractory pain was treated. Continuous lidocaine infusion was initiated at a dose of 35 microg/kg per minute and increased over 4 days to 50 microg/kg per minute, at which point the patient was discharged for continued end-of-life comfort care. The patient had excellent pain relief without the associated lethargy of high-dose opiates. No complicating neuroexcitatory symptoms or cardiac conduction abnormalities were experienced. Intravenous lidocaine may be an effective alternative to opioids in the treatment of refractory malignant pain in the pediatric patient with terminal cancer.

Research abstracts