If you have arthritis, chances are your doctor gave you a prescription for an opioid pain medication at some point. Opioids are effective at relieving pain, including post-surgical pain, and for some people who live with chronic pain from arthritis or other conditions, they are one part of managing that condition.
Arthritis is painful … and it’s relentless. The Arthritis Foundation knows the pain our community endures. Based on a survey of arthritis patients, we know that:
- The #1 goal of arthritis treatment is to “reduce pain.”
- The #1 motivator for seeking out information is “I experienced pain.”
Pain is not an easy topic to discuss, but if we bring it out of the shadows, we believe the result will be eye-opening for everyone – and uplifting in mind, body and soul for the 54 million Americans who suffer from arthritis pain. The Arthritis Foundation is advancing a national conversation about the true pain – physical and emotional – that arthritis causes.
The United States has been grappling with a growing opioid epidemic that is forcing doctors, policymakers and patients to come up with alternative ways to manage both chronic and acute pain and reduce the amount of opioid prescribing in the country. A pair of studies presented recently at the 2018 meeting of the American Association of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOS) in New Orleans examine two possibilities for patients undergoing surgery.
The first study found that counseling before surgery significantly cuts the number of opioids patients take after hand surgery. And the second study, led by the same doctor, showed that ibuprofen and acetaminophen each treats postsurgical pain from hand surgery as well as oxycodone.
September is Pain Awareness Month – when we raise public awareness about the chronic pain nearly 100 million Americans experience and ways to effectively manage it.
Everyone has acute pain from time to time, typically coming from an injury, like cutting a finger or pulling a muscle; usually the pain goes away within 30 days or once the injury heals. Chronic pain, on the other hand, persists or progresses; your body keeps hurting for weeks, months or even years.
If you have arthritis, you may experience chronic pain.
When you think of arthritis one of the first things that comes to mind is pain. Pain can be all consuming; whether it’s burning, aching, or stiffness it’s not only an annoyance, it can affect every aspect of your life. You shouldn’t have to just “live” with the pain either. It is possible to manage your pain and improve your quality of life.
Continue reading Announcing the New Breaking the Arthritis Pain Chain Toolkit