Psychology & Psychiatry

The soothing effects of strangers

Is pain treatment more helpful if it is provided by a friend, or is the help of a stranger better? A study conducted by researchers from the Universities of Wuerzburg, Amsterdam and Zurich investigated this question and found ...

Health

Patient-controlled analgesia reduces pain at higher cost

(HealthDay)—For patients presenting to the emergency department in pain, who are subsequently admitted to the hospital, the cost per hour in moderate or severe pain averted is higher for patient-controlled analgesia versus ...

Medications

Opioids produce analgesia via immune cells

Opioids are the most powerful painkillers. Researchers at the Charité - Universitätsmedizin Berlin have now found that the analgesic effects of opioids are not exclusively mediated by opioid receptors in the brain, but ...

Pediatrics

Many babies in clinical trials experience unnecessary pain

A recent review found that most newborns that are included in control groups during clinical trials concerning minor painful procedures are denied analgesia, despite international guidelines stating that babies should be ...

Diseases, Conditions, Syndromes

Lasting analgesia for subcompartmental GON block

(HealthDay)—For patients with cervicogenic headache (CH), the classical technique for greater occipital nerve (GON) block results in two weeks of analgesia, compared with at least 24 weeks for the subcompartmental technique, ...

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Analgesic

An analgesic (also known as a painkiller) is any member of the group of drugs used to relieve pain (achieve analgesia). The word analgesic derives from Greek an- ("without") and algos ("pain").

Analgesic drugs act in various ways on the peripheral and central nervous systems; they include paracetamol (para-acetylaminophenol, also known in the US as acetaminophen), the non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) such as the salicylates, and opioid drugs such as morphine and opium. They are distinct from anesthetics, which reversibly eliminate sensation.

In choosing analgesics, the severity and response to other medication determines the choice of agent; the WHO pain ladder, originally developed in cancer-related pain, is widely applied to find suitable drugs in a stepwise manner. The analgesic choice is also determined by the type of pain: for neuropathic pain, traditional analgesics are less effective, and there is often benefit from classes of drugs that are not normally considered analgesics, such as tricyclic antidepressants and anticonvulsants.

This text uses material from Wikipedia, licensed under CC BY-SA