Improper Pain Management After Surgical Operations Linked to Opioid Epidemic

A recent report released by researchers from the University of Dundee has found that prescriptions given to alleviate pain after operations are a primary cause of the opioid crisis in some countries. The study, which was reported in “The Lancet,” was co-authored by Prof. Lesley Colvin from the institution. It compiled evidence describing the role surgeries play in the crisis.

The authors of the report deduce that pain management has been a significant contributor to the opioid crisis on account of improper prescriptions. As the population grows older and more surgeries are conducted, chronic post-surgical pain continues to become a huge problem. This pain can materialize after any surgery.

Every year, more than 300 million individuals undergo surgeries. Of this number, roughly 10% suffer from chronic pain post-surgery.

The study found that in the period between 2001 and 2013, the use of prescription opioids globally increased to more than 7 billion daily doses annually from about 3 billion. It noted that doctors in different countries prescribed medication in excess of what was needed to manage pain, which increased the risk of diversion or misuse.

The authors of the report request that interventions such as new methods of pain management, enhanced medical training in opioid prescription, drug monitoring policies and specialist pain clinics, be employed. They note that the use of alternative medications for pain management may also help keep the epidemic in check.

In the report, Colvin stated that many individuals were aware of the opioid crisis in America, as there had been a considerable increase in the prescription of opioids for chronic pain management. The professor, who is also the chair of Pain Medicine at the institution’s School of Medicine, explained that they were focused on getting to the bottom of the increase, adding that there was no doubt that among the main contributors was surgical operations.

He noted that most individuals who underwent surgeries were prescribed strong painkillers. However, he continued, these doses weren’t stopped when they should have been, and these individuals graduated to using higher doses, which brought about opioid-induced hyperalgesia, tolerance, misuse problems and various side effects.

Colvin asserted that understanding the effects of opioids at societal, clinical and neurobiological levels was needed in order to enhance future patient care.

In the report, the researchers also highlighted the research gaps that needed to be filled in order to improve the current epidemic. Additionally, they noted that conducting large population-based studies would be useful in helping to understand the link between chronic pain and opioid use after surgical operations.

If a lack of the most appropriate pain-management formulations was the issue, several firms, including Tryp Therapeutics Inc. (CSE: TRYP) (OTCQB: TRYPF), are working to develop novel remedies for chronic pain. These will hopefully reduce opioid dependence rates.

NOTE TO INVESTORS: The latest news and updates relating to Tryp Therapeutics Inc. (CSE: TRYP) (OTCQB: TRYPF) available in the company’s newsroom at https://ibn.fm/TRYPF

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