Study: Opioids No More Effective than Common Painkillers at Treating Pain

Overprescribing and misuse of prescription opioids have helped to fuel the current epidemic in New Jersey and around the country, which claimed more than 1,900 lives in New Jersey and more than 50,000 nationwide in 2016.

The Partnership for a Drug-Free New Jersey has supported efforts to curb overprescribing, including new legislation passed in New Jersey last year that requires prescribers to discuss the addictive nature of opioids as well as possible non-opioid alternatives to address acute and chronic pain.

Using alternatives to opioids can eliminate or lessen the potential for addiction, and in many cases can result in more effective treatment.  

A government study released last week supported that case, finding that opioids were no more effective than common painkillers, like acetaminophen, in treating patients with chronic back pain and arthritis.

The year-long study found that opioids did not prove more effective in improving pain related to daily functions and were less effective at alleviating pain intensity. Patients on opioids also reported more side effects.

This study provides further proof that opioids are an effective option in some cases. However, they may not be the only answer in addressing both acute and chronic pain in patients.

The opioid crisis is not slowing down, as indicated in a CDC report last week stating that emergency room visits for opioid overdoses increased 30 percent from 2016 to 2017. It is imperative that New Jersey residents become educated on the risks associated with prescription opioids and realize that there may be safer options available to help treat pain.

 

Leave a Comment

Blog Updates

Enter your email address and we'll send you an email each time we post something new.