Log in to search using one of your social media accounts:


Pain expert: Judge the opioid treatment, not the patient

With medications that carry significant risks, such as opioids, appropriate prescribing practices are critical to patient safety. One physician in Boston lives by a mantra that puts patients first: Judge the treatment, not the patient. We need to start re-conceptualizing chronic pain as a chronic disease, said Daniel P. Alford, MD, associate professor of medicine at the Boston University School of Medicine and director of the Safe and Competent Opioid Prescribing Education (SCOPE of Pain) program. “Acute pain is a symptom, and it’s life-sustaining—and you need to feel acute pain in order to survive,” Dr. Alford said. But “there is no advantage to chronic pain. Chronic pain really is a malfunctioning of the nervous system and requires, like other chronic diseases, a multimodal approach.” Assessing whether opioids are the appropriate course of treatment Many potential physical, psycho-behavioral, procedural and pharmacologic options exist for managing chronic pain. Dr. Alford follows a process that helps him to make the appropriate clinical judgment regarding whether or not opioids are an appropriate course of treatment for each individual patient: 1.  Determine whether the patient has a pain process that is likely to respond to opioid therapy. For a lot of chronic pain disorders, opioids are probably not the answer, Dr. Alford said. “For example, chronic migraine headaches, fibromyalgia and back pain … tend t...
Source: AMA Wire - Category: Journals (General) Authors: Source Type: news

Related Links:

More News: Acupuncture | Addiction | Back Pain | Boston University | Cancer | Cancer & Oncology | Chronic Pain | Education | Emergency Medicine | Fibromyalgia | General Medicine | Headache | Migraine | Overdose | Pain | Rural Health | Universities & Medical Training