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Painkillers Don't Ease Disability Due to Nerve Damage: Study

Posted 9 days ago by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Feb. 1, 2016 – Taking prescription narcotic painkillers doesn't improve movement or reduce disability in people with pain related to nerve damage, researchers have found. "Even though [narcotic] medications can be a powerful pain killer, it does not necessarily mean improved function will follow. Pain is not the only factor in determining function," study lead author and pain expert Geoff Bostick, an associate professor of physical therapy at the University of Alberta in Canada, said in a university news release. The research included almost 800 patients with pain due to nerve damage, from causes such as diabetes and pinched nerves. Some were prescribed narcotic painkillers – such as morphine, codeine and Tylenol 3 – while others didn't receive the drugs. At 6-month and 12-month follow-ups, those who took the painkillers didn't show greater improvements in movement and ... Read more

Related support groups: Pain, Suboxone, Oxycodone, Methadone, Fibromyalgia, Hydrocodone, Percocet, Tramadol, OxyContin, Vicodin, Norco, Morphine, Fentanyl, Lortab, Codeine, Opana, Tylenol, Chronic Pain, Subutex, Neuralgia

Many Chronic Pain Sufferers May Overuse Nonprescription Painkillers

Posted 16 days ago by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Jan. 25, 2016 – Many people with chronic pain ignore dosing instructions on over-the-counter pain medicines and put themselves at risk for an overdose, a new survey suggests. An overdose of these medicines can result in serious side effects, such as stomach bleeding, ulcers, liver damage and even death, according to the American Gastroenterological Association (AGA). The AGA-commissioned poll of more than 1,000 U.S. adults aged 30 and older and 251 gastroenterologists found that 43 percent of chronic pain sufferers said they knowingly have taken more than the recommended dose of an over-the-counter (OTC) pain medicine at some point. Common types of OTC pain medicines include acetaminophen (Tylenol) and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), such as ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin), naproxen (Aleve) and aspirin. "Pain is incredibly personal, but taking more than the recommended ... Read more

Related support groups: Pain, Suboxone, Oxycodone, Methadone, Hydrocodone, Percocet, Back Pain, Tramadol, OxyContin, Vicodin, Norco, Morphine, Fentanyl, Aspirin, Lortab, Codeine, Opana, Tylenol, Muscle Pain, Chronic Pain

Did Painkiller Crackdown Cause Heroin Epidemic?

Posted 13 Jan 2016 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, Jan. 13, 2016 – Top U.S. drug researchers are challenging a leading theory about the nation's heroin epidemic, saying it's not a direct result of the crackdown on prescription painkillers such as OxyContin and Vicodin. The commentary, published in the Jan. 14 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine, is unlikely to resolve the debate, as other researchers disagree with the authors' conclusion. What they likely will agree on is that heroin's popularity is soaring – with more than 914,000 reported users in the United States in 2014, an increase of 145 percent since 2007, according to background notes with the commentary. This has led to a spike in overdose deaths – more than 10,500 in 2014. Some researchers and health officials point to recent limits on prescription painkillers as a likely cause of the heroin scourge. But the commentary authors said that the rise in ... Read more

Related support groups: Pain, Suboxone, Oxycodone, Methadone, Hydrocodone, Percocet, Back Pain, Tramadol, OxyContin, Vicodin, Norco, Morphine, Fentanyl, Lortab, Codeine, Opana, Muscle Pain, Chronic Pain, Subutex, Dilaudid

Florida 'Pill Mill' Crackdown May Have Curbed Painkiller ODs

Posted 22 Dec 2015 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Dec. 21, 2015 – A crackdown on "pill mills" in Florida appears to have led to fewer overdose deaths from narcotic painkillers, and may have helped reduce heroin overdose deaths as well, researchers report. Pill mills are clinics run by doctors who purportedly write large numbers of prescriptions for narcotic painkillers for cash, often without examining the patient, the researchers said. These painkillers include Oxycontin, Percocet and Vicodin. After Florida officials began their crackdown on pill mills, more than 1,000 fewer deaths occurred over 34 months, the study revealed. "Curbing the operation of pill mills may be an effective way for states to reduce prescription narcotic overdose death rates and total narcotic overdose death rates," said lead researcher Alene Kennedy-Hendricks, an assistant scientist at Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health in Baltimore. ... Read more

Related support groups: Pain, Suboxone, Oxycodone, Methadone, Hydrocodone, Percocet, Back Pain, Tramadol, OxyContin, Vicodin, Norco, Opiate Dependence, Morphine, Fentanyl, Lortab, Codeine, Opiate Withdrawal, Opana, Chronic Pain, Subutex

Health Tip: Keeping Kids in Pain Comfortable

Posted 18 Dec 2015 by Drugs.com

-- Pain may slow a child's recovery from illness or injury. Medication can help, but there are other ways to keep kids comfortable. The University of Michigan Health System advises: Offer plenty of love, comfort and support. Soothe your child with extra hugs and cuddles. Keep your child calm and don't let him or her feel anxious, which can worsen pain. Try heat therapy or cold packs, soothing music or gentle massage. Read more

Related support groups: Pain, Infections, Headache, Back Pain, Migraine, Muscle Pain, Chronic Pain, Bacterial Infection, Influenza, Breakthrough Pain, Sciatica, Neck Pain, Head Injury, Pain/Fever, Postoperative Pain, Head Injury with Loss of Consciousness

Electrical Stimulation May Ease Low Back Pain for Some

Posted 4 Dec 2015 by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, Dec. 4, 2015 – Electrical nerve stimulation may offer some relief for older adults with chronic back pain, a new study suggests. While wearing and activating the "transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation" (TENS) device, people had significant improvement in pain when resting, according to the researchers. The study participants also had a reduction in pain while moving, along with improvement in physical functioning, the researchers said. "TENS is not a new treatment. It's been around 50 years or more," said lead researcher Corey Simon, a postdoctoral researcher, in the University of Florida's Pain Research and Intervention Center in Gainesville. The TENS unit is a small battery-powered machine that delivers low-volt electrical current through electrodes placed on the skin. TENS can be used to treat acute pain, including pain with childbirth, or chronic pain, such as ... Read more

Related support groups: Pain, Suboxone, Oxycodone, Methadone, Hydrocodone, Percocet, Back Pain, Tramadol, OxyContin, Vicodin, Norco, Morphine, Fentanyl, Lortab, Codeine, Opana, Tylenol, Chronic Pain, Subutex, Ibuprofen

Ex-NFL Star Helps Spread the Word on Risks Posed by Painkillers

Posted 30 Oct 2015 by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, Oct. 30, 2015 – During his 12 seasons as a fullback with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, 6-foot-1, 250-pound Mike Alstott was known as "The A-Train" – a punishing runner and blocker and fan favorite. From 1996 to 2007, Alstott racked up an impressive National Football League resume: 5,088 yards rushing; 71 touchdowns (the most in team history); six Pro Bowls; and a Super Bowl championship ring in 2002. But the awards and accolades came with a price that's very familiar to many Americans: debilitating aches and injuries and a whole lot of pain medication. "One hundred million Americans suffer from chronic pain," said Dr. Anita Gupta, associate professor of anesthesiology at Drexel University College of Medicine in Philadelphia. "It's a really staggering figure that's been rising year after year, so that today there are more people struggling with pain than with heart disease, ... Read more

Related support groups: Pain, Suboxone, Oxycodone, Methadone, Hydrocodone, Percocet, Back Pain, Tramadol, OxyContin, Vicodin, Norco, Morphine, Fentanyl, Lortab, Codeine, Opana, Chronic Pain, Subutex, Ibuprofen, Naproxen

Narcotic Painkiller Use in Adolescence May Raise Risk of Adult Addiction

Posted 28 Oct 2015 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, Oct. 28, 2015 – Teens who are given prescription narcotic painkillers may run a higher risk of abusing narcotics after high school, a new study suggests. Researchers said teen painkiller use was associated with a 33 percent increased risk of later abuse. And it was seen mostly among those with little to no history of drug use and those who strongly disapproved of illegal drug use. "A prescription for a pain reliever can put adolescents at risk for future pain reliever misuse," said study author Richard Miech, a research professor at the Survey Research Center at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor. For the study, Miech and his colleagues used data that tracked more than 6,200 high school seniors until they were 23. At first glance, it seems counterintuitive that the increased risk was concentrated among teens who had little experience with illegal drugs, Miech ... Read more

Related support groups: Pain, Suboxone, Oxycodone, Methadone, Hydrocodone, Percocet, Back Pain, Tramadol, OxyContin, Vicodin, Norco, Opiate Dependence, Morphine, Fentanyl, Lortab, Codeine, Opiate Withdrawal, Opana, Chronic Pain, Subutex

Medical Marijuana Seems Safe for Chronic Pain Patients, Study Finds

Posted 7 Oct 2015 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, Oct. 7, 2015 – Medical marijuana appears mostly safe for treating chronic pain, at least among people with some experience using the drug, a new study suggests. People who used pot to ease their pain didn't have an increased risk of serious side effects, compared to people with pain who didn't use marijuana, a Canadian research team found. But, medical marijuana users were more likely to have less-serious side effects, the study authors said. These side effects included headache, nausea, sleepiness and dizziness, the research revealed. "In terms of a side effect profile, we felt the drug had a reasonably good safety profile, if you compare those effects to other medications," said study lead author Dr. Mark Ware. He is director of clinical research for the Alan Edwards Pain Management Unit at McGill University Health Center in Montreal. Although this study focused on the ... Read more

Related support groups: Pain, Back Pain, Chronic Pain, Breakthrough Pain, Chronic Myofascial Pain, Cannabis

Back Pain Patients Seek Pain Relief First, Mobility Second

Posted 21 Sep 2015 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Sept. 21, 2015 – Pain relief is a greater concern than mobility for people with a common form of lower back pain known as lumbar spinal stenosis, a new study indicates. When asked to choose between a treatment that would reduce discomfort and one that would help them stand and walk, the vast majority of patients wanted to ease their pain, the researchers found. "There has long been a debate in the medical community over striking the right balance between pain relief and physical function," said the study's lead author, Dr. John Markman, director of the Translational Pain Research Program in the University of Rochester Department of Neurosurgery in Rochester, N.Y. "While physicians have leaned toward the need to increase mobility, this study shows that patients have a clear preference for pain relief," Markman said in a university news release. The researchers explained that ... Read more

Related support groups: Pain, Oxycodone, Methadone, Hydrocodone, Back Pain, Tramadol, OxyContin, Morphine, Fentanyl, Codeine, Opana, Tylenol, Chronic Pain, Subutex, Ibuprofen, Naproxen, Dilaudid, Meloxicam, Breakthrough Pain, Acetaminophen

25 Million U.S. Adults Struggle With Daily Pain

Posted 18 Aug 2015 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Aug. 18, 2015 – Pain is widespread in much of America, with more than 25 million adults – 11 percent – suffering on a daily basis, a new national survey reveals. And approximately 14 million adults – roughly 6.4 percent – experience severe pain, which can be associated with poorer health and disability, researchers found. Other national studies of chronic pain have yielded similar results, said study author Richard Nahin, an epidemiologist with the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health at the U.S. National Institutes of Health (NIH). "What makes this study unique is that I also looked at how often adults have mild pain," he said. Nahin found that about 54 million adults – nearly one-quarter – reported "mild," but not incapacitating, pain. Whether pain is increasing nationally is difficult to say, Nahin said. But the good news is that roughly half of ... Read more

Related support groups: Pain, Fibromyalgia, Back Pain, Muscle Pain, Chronic Pain, Breakthrough Pain, Sciatica, Neck Pain, Neuropathic Pain, Knee Joint Replacement, Scoliosis, Nocturnal Leg Cramps, Frozen Shoulder, Pain/Fever, Postoperative Pain, Somatoform Pain Disorder

Florida Laws May Help Lower Abuse of Prescription Painkillers

Posted 17 Aug 2015 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Aug. 17, 2015 – New legislation designed to rein in prescription narcotic abuse in the state of Florida has prompted a small, but quick decrease in narcotic painkiller prescriptions, a new investigation reveals. About a year after the laws were enacted, Florida saw total prescriptions for the narcotic painkillers called opioids drop by 1.4 percent, the study found. Researchers also discovered a 2.5 percent decrease in the total of opioid volume that was dispensed. What's more, significant falloff was seen among patients and dispensaries that had been at the highest end of the prescribing spectrum, the study noted. "There are no magic bullets when it comes to the opioid epidemic," acknowledged study lead author Dr. Caleb Alexander, co-director of the John Hopkins Center of Drug Safety and Effectiveness in Baltimore. "The problem is huge. America is just 5 percent of the world's ... Read more

Related support groups: Pain, Suboxone, Oxycodone, Methadone, Hydrocodone, Percocet, Back Pain, Tramadol, OxyContin, Vicodin, Norco, Morphine, Fentanyl, Lortab, Codeine, Opana, Chronic Pain, Subutex, Dilaudid, Breakthrough Pain

Yeast's New Use: Making Narcotic Painkillers

Posted 13 Aug 2015 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, Aug. 13, 2015 – Scientists say they have genetically engineered baker's yeast to create powerful narcotic painkillers. The painkillers in question are called opioids, and include opiate-containing medicines such as morphine, Oxycontin and Vicodin, most commonly sourced from the opium poppy. But the new technology might bypass the poppy, leading to faster and possibly cheaper methods of creating many types of plant-based medicines, according to the Stanford University team. "This is only the beginning," said study senior author Christina Smolke, an associate professor of bioengineering. "The techniques we developed and demonstrate for opioid [narcotic] pain relievers can be adapted to produce many plant-derived compounds to fight cancers, infectious diseases and chronic conditions such as high blood pressure and arthritis." The finding does have a potential downside, however: ... Read more

Related support groups: Pain, Suboxone, Oxycodone, Methadone, Hydrocodone, Percocet, Tramadol, OxyContin, Vicodin, Norco, Morphine, Fentanyl, Lortab, Codeine, Opana, Chronic Pain, Subutex, Dilaudid, Breakthrough Pain, Opana ER

Many Don't Tell Docs About Using Alternative Therapies for Pain

Posted 20 Jul 2015 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, July 20, 2015 – Many Americans with chronic pain who use alternative therapies – such as acupuncture – don't discuss these treatments with their doctors, a new study finds. "Our study confirms that most of our patients with chronic pain are seeking complementary treatments to supplement the care we provide in the primary care setting," lead author Dr. Charles Elder, an affiliate investigator at the Kaiser Permanente Center for Health Research, said in a Kaiser news release. Elder is also the physician lead for Kaiser Permanente's complementary and alternative medicine program. The researchers surveyed more than 6,000 patients in Oregon and Washington. All of the study volunteers had three or more outpatient visits for chronic pain within 18 months. Fifty-eight percent of people with chronic pain had used chiropractic care, acupuncture or both to treat their pain, the study ... Read more

Related support groups: Pain, Chronic Pain, Breakthrough Pain

Back Pain and Depression Combo Lessens Pain Relief from Narcotic Painkillers

Posted 9 Jul 2015 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, July 9, 2015 – For people with chronic back pain who also have depression or anxiety, narcotic painkillers may not be the best therapy for their pain, a new study finds. "A lot of patients have depression and anxiety on top of their back pain," said lead researcher Dr. Ajay Wasan, a professor of anesthesiology and psychiatry at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine. Pain can make depression and anxiety worse and depression and anxiety can make pain worse, Wasan said. "It's a two-way street." But, he added, people with depression or anxiety may get a lot less pain relief from narcotic painkillers and have a higher rate of misuse of their medications. Wasan said misuse includes taking too many pills and running out of medication early, doctor shopping – getting prescriptions for the same drug from several doctors – and using marijuana or cocaine along with narcotic ... Read more

Related support groups: Pain, Depression, Suboxone, Oxycodone, Anxiety and Stress, Methadone, Hydrocodone, Percocet, Back Pain, Tramadol, OxyContin, Vicodin, Norco, Morphine, Fentanyl, Lortab, Codeine, Opana, Chronic Pain, Major Depressive Disorder

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