Why Opioids Are Prescribed

Why are Opioids prescribed? What Sicknesses Do They Treat? 

Around 3 million Americans rely on the few effective treatment options for chronic pain due to nerve damage. Opium-based drugs or opioids are generally prescribed to treat chronic pain but they don’t do well with neuropathic pain. According to new research, opioids are used to manage chronic pain due to nerve damage.

Why Doctors Prescribe Opioids 

Recent studies support opioids because they are effective like other common treatments to relieve chronic pain associated with nerve damage, even though pain management is essential. But patients who took the most effective and highest dose of opioids also suffered most side effects like depression, restlessness, and changes in behavior. Due to these side effects, they stopped taking the drug.

The sicknesses that opioids treat include chronic pain caused by nerve damage are stroke, injury, or diseases like shingles, diabetes, and multiple sclerosis. Usually, such types of pains don’t fade away with common anti-inflammatory medications that are used to cure other types of chronic pains. But certain anti-epileptic drugs and tri-cyclic antidepressants have been effective for patients.

In this study conducted by the National Institutes of Health, Rowbotham compared two treatment options for 8 weeks of levorphanol at the University of California, along with his colleagues. They tested it on patients with different neuropathic pain problems.

According to the research, the high-dose opioids provided greater relief on chronic pain than lower doses. It reduced pain by 36% among the patients who took high doses, while 21% of pain is reduced among those who took lower doses.

There was still a lack of evidence to support that any of these patients developed tolerance to the drug, using higher doses, and they hadn’t observe any addictive behavior.