The media, medical professionals and certain pain advocacy organisations are constantly pushing a message that opioids are ineffective for chronic pain, that opioids actually increase chronic pain, and that addiction rates are high in the chronic pain population.
All of these statements are not backed by the scientific data, in fact there is very little scientific data at all. What there is is twisted to serve the agenda of restricting or preventing the prescribing of opioids for chronic pain, ever.
While there are many other interventions that need to be tried, and opioids should be a treatment of last resort, opioid ARE safe and effective in the appropriate patient populations.
This page is a collection of links to the scientific data, because pain patients are being denied access to a safe and appropriate treatment, because governing bodies refuse to make a distinction between addicts and chronic pain patients. They don’t even distinguish between legal prescription medication and street heroin.
If people are denied access to the only medications that gives them quality of life, I firmly believe the suicide will increase here, just as it has in the U.S. We need patient advocates to step tell the other side of the story.
In them meantime, here’s the evidence I can find.
“Opioids increase chronic pain”
This myth gets thrown around constantly. There was ONE study done, in RATS and it was specifically for NERVE pain. In no other forum would that study be taken as any kind of proof in that the same is true in humans (animal studies and human studies are very different things). NERVE pain is also very different to nociceptive, or ‘real’ pain, where there is actual tissue damage. Chronic pain can be caused by actual, ongoing tissue damage, so the study is void in anything but nerve pain. It is also one, very small study. More research is required but until the research is done, this is a myth.
This link https://theconversation.com/do-opioids-make-pain-worse-60587 references the same study, but makes it very clear that the effect ONLY happens with neuropathic pain. So the myth of opioids making pain worse, IF its true, is only relevant to neurophatic or nerve pain.