Anxiety, depression linked to more opioid use after surgery

Surgeons wielding their life-saving scalpels, laparoscopic tools, or other implements to repair or remove what ails their patients understand all too well that pain is an unavoidable part of the healing process. Yet the current opioid crisis has made the standard prescribing practices for these highly effective analgesics fraught with risk. New research from Michigan Medicine could help clinicians mitigate […]

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Prescribed opioids associated with overdose risk for family members without prescriptions: Case control study finds nearly threefold increase in overdose rates for those on same health insurance plan as person with opioid prescription

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, opioid overdoses were responsible for more than 42,000 deaths in 2016. Access to family members’ drugs may be a strong risk factor for overdose in individuals without their own prescriptions, according to a new study by investigators from Brigham and Women’s Hospital. Their findings were published recently in JAMA Internal Medicine. […]

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Short-term use of opioids increases subjective pleasure: Risk of addiction

The human opioid system contributes to the regulation of emotions, pleasure and pain. Opioids are strong analgesics. In addition to effectively relieving pain, external opioids may improve mood and reduce negative emotions. However, not much has been known about the effect of opioids on emotional responses caused by external stimuli. Together with their colleagues from Aalto University and the University […]

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Blunting pain’s emotional component: Blocking a type of opioid receptor restores motivation

Chronic pain involves more than just hurting. People suffering from pain often experience sadness, depression and lethargy. That’s one reason opioids can be so addictive — they not only dampen the pain but also make people feel euphoric. What if it were possible to develop a pain killer that could curb the negative emotions associated with pain without causing euphoria? […]

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Opioid crisis: Only a US phenomenon? Prescription opioid use rises in the Nordic countries

Addiction to prescription opioids has reached a crisis level in the United States. Now the drug is causing concern across the Atlantic. Researchers from Denmark, Norway and Sweden urge caution after discovering that prescriptions for the pain medication oxycodone have significantly increased during the last decade. The opioid crisis in the United States shows no sign of abating. On average, […]

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After naloxone, when can opioid overdose patients be safely discharged? Study confirms one hour rule

  Naloxone has saved thousands of lives. But can patients be safely discharged from the Emergency Department (ED) just an hour after they receive the medication that curtails drug overdoses? According to the St. Paul’s Early Discharge Rule developed in 2000, that’s how long providers should observe patients after naloxone treatment, so long as their vital signs meet specific criteria […]

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