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Opioids the Best Way to Treat Pain :by Gerardo Perez

Imagine the doctor telling you that


your kid who hasnt been able to live a
normal life due to his/her disease, will
be able to live a normal life again.
Imagine the people from this country
who suffer day in and day out from
chronic pain, will finally have some hope
that all the pain they suffer from will not be there anymore.
Millions of Americans suffer from chronic pain. As you can see from the chart
below more Americans suffer from chronic pain than from any other disease.
Main reasons for chronic pain are caused by cancer, multiple sclerosis,
degenerative disease or
tumors that infiltrate and
compress the organs. Its a
very personal experience that
no test can measure, so why
not help them release it? Why
not provide these patients with
a way to become tolerant to
pain? Why not make their
suffering a lot less?
Opioids are the
way to go. Now theres a lot of concern in terms of opioids and
the risk an individual has to become addicted when they take
these types of analgesics. Opioids may produce drowsiness,
mental confusion, depress respiration but what people fail to
realize is all these consequences arrive for the simple reason
that patients dont follow procedures correctly. If taken correctly
opioid analgesics can reduce the intensity of
Source: American (Academy of Pain Medicine:
Chronic pain compared to other conditions Chart.)
pain that a patient has. The National Institute on Drug abuse states that
opioids are medications that reduce the intensity of pain signals reaching
the brain and diminishes the effects of painful stimulus. These analgesics

act by attaching to specific proteins called opioid


receptors helping reduce the perception on pain.
They are also essential medications, the most
effective drugs for the relief of pain and suffering
(Portenoy et al, 2004).
Jose Rodriguez a surgery coordinator at
Sierra East hospital states that he would definitely
use opioid analgesics with patients as long as they
are used under proper guidance. Chronic pain is a
serious issue that may lead to other issues such as
depression if not treated. Therefore I would not
hesitate to treat pain with opioids. Mr. Rodriguez states that with any drug
there is always a chance of addiction and its important to assess patients for
both dependence and addiction and look for signs of possible abuse. If with
any drug there is always a chance of addiction why not risk it with opioid
analgesics that will actually relieve pain and at certain extent help an
individual live a better and more normal life.
Important information and game changer is that if by any chance a
patient becomes addicted to opioids, it is curable. U.S. Department of Health
and Human Services states that opioid addiction can be treated. An
individual with addiction can regain a healthy life. U.S. Department of Health
and Human Services actually explains that the best way to treat opioid
addiction is by medication. Medication allows him or her to regain a normal
state of mind. Not the same as substituting one addictive drug for another.
These new medications such as methadone and bubrenorphine help trick the
brain into thinking it is still receiving the opioid helping the patient feel
normal not high.
Not only is opioid abuse treated by medication but it can also include
counseling. Patients understand that and learn about the disease of
addiction. Learn why addiction occurs and more than anything it provides
motivation for the patient to stick to treatment.
If opioids help patients from suffering and are the most efficient drugs to
help relief pain why not help people understand that opioids are the best way
to treat pain. Concerns about becoming addicted are there but realizing that
with the correct treatment and patients communicating with their provider to

monitor the effectiveness of the medication the risks of becoming addicted


are less. Theres ways to treat opioid abuse if necessary already proven by
the U.S. Department of Health and human services. We need people to
regain their life that even if they suffer from chronic pain it is manageable. If
it cant be cured it will be managed. A person can always regain a healthy
life.

Reference Page

NIH (National Institute on Drug Abuse)


www.drugabuse.gov

NIH Medline plus ( National Institutes of Health and friends of the National Library
Medicine)
www.nlm.nih.gov

Web MD (American corporation publisher of human health)


http://www.webmd.com/pain-management/guide/understanding-pain-managementchronic-pain
Remedys Health communities (Article by J. Swierzewski, III M.D.)
http://www.healthcommunities.com/chronic-pain/chronic-pain-overview.shtml
U.S Department of Health and Human Services
www.samhsa.gov
Source: American Academy of Pain Medicine: Chronic pain compared to other
conditions
www.Painmed.org/patientcenter/fact_on_pain.aspx
NHTSA (National Highway Traffic Safety Administration)
http://www.nhtsa.gov/people/injury/research/job185drugs/methadone.htm
Interview to Jose Rodriguez RN BSN Surgery Cordinator