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Intravenous methadone in a patient with advanced cancer
  1. Alba Gabriela Picco Brunetto
  1. Palliative Care Unit, Hospital San Juan de Dios, Pamplona 31006, Spain
  1. Correspondence to Dr Alba Gabriela Picco Brunetto, Palliative Care Unit, Hospital San Juan de Dios, Pamplona 31006, Spain; gabpicco{at}


A patient receiving maintenance treatment with methadone (MTM) was treated with parenteral methadone for intense pain crises in cancer of the tongue with severe mucositis and dysphagia. Authors like Manfredi et al describe good results in the use of methadone as an analgesic in patients with MTM. The difficulties which arise with parenteral use derive from the drug itself and from those to whom the treatment is administered: serious side effects like malignant arrhythmias and respiratory depression and the complex nature of these patients, addicted to opiates with a terminal illness and pain which is difficult to treat. It should be administered by experts in palliative care in a healthcare unit where it can be successfully monitored.

  • methadone
  • head cáncer
  • pain
  • side effects
  • addiction

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  • Collaborators Non-author contributors Rocío Ríos Marta Errasti José Rivadeneira Isabel Erquiaga.

  • Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Patient consent Not required.

  • Ethics approval The author declares that followed their institutions' protocols to access to the patients data and that was done with the unique purpose of the scientific investigation and scientific disclosure.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; internally peer reviewed.