Breakthrough pain is defined as pain that occurs between regularly scheduled doses of pain medication. Breakthrough pain is often abbreviated by health care professionals as BTP. Breakthrough pain is a distressing symptom and must be treated promptly.
Most patients with chronic pain, including palliative care and hospice patients, are given medication to use as needed to treat breakthrough pain. Medication for BTP is typically fast acting with a relatively short duration of action (usually providing relief for two to four hours). A common medication often used in the hospice setting to treat BTP is oral morphine solution (OMS). OMS is a concentrated liquid form of morphine that begins working quickly and generally provides relief for two to four hours.
Learn more about treating breakthrough pain