Opioids continue to have a bad name, and for a good reason, the number of lives they took due to their abuse has led to national crisis. Now, scientists at Keck Medicine published new data in Arthritis & Rheumatology that reveals that a potential new opioid medication without the less additive components. The drug aims to slow the progression of arthritis and treat pain effectively than commonly prescribed opioid drugs.
"Arthritis affects nearly a quarter of adults in the United States, many of whom take addictive opioids to manage their pain. The implications of this study may someday alter how we provide orthopaedic care to significantly reduce the number of patients experiencing long-term pain and addiction," says lead author Alexander Weber, MD, sports medicine physician and orthopaedic surgeon with Keck Medicine.
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The drug works by activating the kappa opioid receptor (KOR) that alleviates pain with a reduced risk of addiction, which binds to opioid-like compounds in the central and peripheral nervous systems to alleviate pain, resulting in targeted pain relief with a reduced risk of addiction.
"We hope that the findings of our study will lay the foundations for clinical research to further current understandings of the relationship between kappa opioids and osteoarthritis in humans to improve clinical care and quality of life," says Evseenko.
Source: Science Daily