A wide variety of medications are prescribed via the pain centre. These medications may be used for acute or chronic pain. Different types of medications are used to manage chronic pain. These include opiates or morphine like drugs, as well as adjuvant therapies which work on nerve transmitters. By and large opiate based analgesics are not particularly effective in the long term within the context of chronic pain and strict national guidance exists as to how and when opioid analgesic should be used. More information on this can be found on the faculty of pain medicine website, in the opiates aware section, via the link below.
Many of the medications that are used for chronic pain are used to try to modulate the nervous system to alter the amount of specific nerve transmitters that are present, thus reducing pain messages arriving in the brain. Generally speaking these medications form part of a more broad-based treatment plan. In chronic pain settings they tend to be effective in around one and three patients to relieve around 30% of pain. They are by no means the sole solution to managing chronic pain. Whilst some patients may receive good pain relief and functional improvement from these analgesic medications, others will not be able to tolerate the side effects or will have other conditions which mean that these medications cannot be used. Further information on the common medication is used in chronic pain can be found via the link below.