STATES CHRONICLE – A revolutionary study might have come with a simple and effective solution to combat the opioid crisis. The study has looked at patients which came to the ER with severe pain, and revealed that drugstore painkillers works just as fine as opioids in relieving these symptoms.
Attempts to curb the opioid epidemic
The United States have been struggling with a severe opioid crisis for many decades now. Finding a solution has been difficult, since many patients rely on opioids as the only treatment which works against their pain. However, the study had as a premise the most effective treatment which least harms the patient, and found a better alternative.
Instead of opioids, they used as treatment a combination of the two drugstore painkillers acetaminophen and ibuprofen. They administered it to 400 patients from the emergency rooms of two hospitals in Bronx, New York. The participants suffered from acute pain from different causes, but most of them were fractures and sprains.
Drugstore painkillers worked as fine as opioids
As a comparison, they also administered pain medication based on opioids. Two hours after the participants had received one of the two treatments, they had to assess the levels of their pain on a scale from one to 11. The results showed no significant difference between the two. This means that drugstore painkillers can work just like the opioids, and don’t pose the risk of getting the patient addicted.
This predicts a great future for the opioid crisis. If this combination of painkillers works fine in the emergency room, then it means that the patients don’t really need an opioid prescription. If they can get the same effects from other medicine, then the number of prescriptions can drop significantly. This is one of the main steps necessary to cut down opioid addiction.
The study has been published in the Journal of the American Medical Association. Unfortunately, CDC says we might need more to combat this crisis. The number of prescriptions has gone down over the past few years, but it still wasn’t enough to reduce addiction.
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