Landmark Trial Shows Opioids for Back Pain No Better Than Placebo


Opioids do not relieve acute low back pain in the short run and lead to worse outcomes when the back pain becomes chronic. This is the result of the first randomized controlled study of safety and efficacy of the use of opioids for lower back pain. 

 After 6 weeks, there was no significant difference in pain scores of patients who took opioids compared to those who took the placebo. And amazingly, after one year, the placebo patients had lower pain scores than those taking the real thing. 

This study* was conducted by Christine Lin PhD. in Australia with 347 adults who had been experiencing low back pain for at least 12 weeks. 

Doctor Lin comments about the study: 
"We need to reassure doctors and patients that most people with lower back pain will recover with time if they manage the process properly by - staying active, avoiding bed rest, and if necessary, using a heat pack for short term relief.” 

 *Study conducted by the National...

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