Pharmacokinetics, Pharmacodynamics and Pharmacogenetics Associated with Nonsteroidal Anti-inflammatory Drugs and Opioids in Pediatric Cancer Patients

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Introduction: Advancing appropriate and adequate analgesic pharmacotherapy in pediatric patients with cancer is an area of clinical need. Few studies have been performed to evaluate the selection of an analgesic and appropriate dosing corresponding to analgesic effect among pediatric cancer patients. This review describes information related to pharmacokinetic, pharmacodynamic, and pharmacogenomic (when applicable) considerations for analgesics that are commonly used to manage pain experienced by pediatric patients with cancer.

Areas covered: Analgesics commonly used to treat pediatric patients with malignancy patterned after the World Health Organization’s ‘analgesic ladder’ for cancer pain management.

Expert opinion: Addressing pain management safely and effectively in pediatric patients with cancer will require advances in both drug development, to increase the armament of analgesics available for children, and our pharmacologic understanding of those analgesics in current use. However, performing the necessary types of studies to develop new analgesics, or gain knowledge of existing therapy, within a population that is relatively small, diverse, and who experience pain originating from a variety of sources, is a tremendous challenge.



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