In 2015, the number of opioids prescribed was enough for every American to be medicated around-the-clock for three weeks. The majority of drug overdose deaths (more than 6 out of 10) involve an opioid. Prescription NSAIDS can also lead to serious health issues. But chronic pain needs to be addressed. One answer might be found in a study published in the Journal of Pain Management.
In the study, 750 patients taking either NSAIDS or Opioids for Chronic Pain were given topical analgesics, a type of pain reliever that is applied directly to the skin of the painful area. After three and six months the patients in the study had improved safety outcomes and reduced reliance on NSAIDS and Opioids.
Over the past few weeks, Dr. Bob Arnot, a physician and athlete and an Emmy award-winning broadcast journalist and author who was previously Chief Medical Correspondent for NBC and CBS News, and Dr. Jeffrey Gudin, a physician and the current director for the Pain Management and Wellness Center in Englewood, New Jersey and the author of the Journal of Pain Management study, have been discussing the importance of ‘topical first’ when addressing pain. Some highlights of recent interviews follow: