opiatesandfibromyalgia

Are Opiates Right for Fibromyalgia?

Opiates are potent anagelsia used to treat acute pain in cancer patients. In the recent two decades, opiates are becoming a choice of pain treatment for people suffering from non-cancer chronic pain such as fibromyalgia, rheumatoid arthritis or chronic migraine. However, more and more studies found evidence that the drug may cause adverse effect when administered chronically..

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What are opiates

Opiates are a class of drugs derived from opium or the juice of poppy plant. (Yes, it is THE opium which is notorious for its illicit uses) Opiates, also known as opioids, is used medically to treat pain. It helps in treating pain by acting on the opioid receptors, found in the brain, spinal cord, and other organs, to dampen pain signals to the brain and numb pain. Opiates also produce a state of euphoria for pain patients who are often depressed.

Who uses opiates

People suffering from unbearable pain such as cancer or chronic pain disorders like rheumatoid arthritis and multiple sclerosis are given opiates in discretion. According to studies, around 30% of fibromyalgia patients are regularly consuming opiates, a class of pharmaceutical painkillers. Opiates help to reduce pain but only temporarily in fibromyalgia patients. Often opiates are only administered when the patient cannot find relief from other painkillers such as analgesic or non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs).

However, the use of opiates remains controvesial as it can come with serious side effects that can lead to death. Click next to continue reading...

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