Prescription Painkillers May Be Over-Prescribed

By Staff Writer

Prescription painkillers are strong drugs that can result in powerful addiction that require substance abuse treatment if they are administered improperly. However, a new study has found that the medications are often prescribed excessively, which may lead to more addictions.

In particular, researchers from the University of North Carolina found that physicians who treat neck pain rely on medications far too often to the point of excluding other treatment options, which may be more effective and carry less risk of addiction.

The study found that 29 percent of neck pain patients were given prescription narcotics, despite the fact that there is little clinical evidence to support this treatment strategy. Instead, researchers said that more patients should be prescribed therapeutic exercises, which have been shown to be effective at reducing pain without the risk of addiction.

Adam Goode, who led the study, said that the findings indicate a need to educate physicians on treatment strategies that can be more effective. This may reduce the number of patients who end up abusing prescription painkillers and need to be sent to rehab facilities.