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Duke And Stanford Opioid And Fibromyalgia Study Published
Sunday 14 July 2019
Duke and Stanford Opioid and Fibromyalgia Study Published
When I saw this tweet from Stanford University Pain this week, I was intrigued.
Stanford and @Duke Anesthesia researchers find brain data to explain why fibromyalgia patients may feel benefit from opioids even though opioids may not work better to reduce chronic pain.
They referred to this article, which I suggest you read.
While the use of long-term opioid medications might not be beneficial for chronic pain per se (i.e., in terms of not improving physical function and not reducing pain interference for example), it is possible that opioid medications could be benefiting brain reward processing and associated reward behavior in patients with chronic pain.
Because the piece was specifically about fibromyalgia, it prompted me to ask Dr. Ginevra Liptan in Oregon what she thought of the study and its conclusion. Her comment was characteristically direct.
“Although it seems you hear nothing but bad news about opioids these days, a new study reports a beneficial effect of opioids on the fibromyalgia brain! Scans demonstrated that those patients taking chronic opioids had normal neural reward responses compared to abnormal responses in those not taking opioids.”
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