Here’s a great piece by Vox on the opiod crisis.
Krebs is the lead author on the first randomized trial, comparing chronic pain patients on prescription opioids (like morphine, hydrocodone, and oxycodone) to patients on non-opioid painkillers (like acetaminophen or Tylenol, naproxen, or meloxicam), measuring their pain intensity and function over the course of a year.
The striking result was that the patients on opioids did no better than those taking the opioid alternatives — despite the much higher risk profile of opioids. At one year, the opioid takers even reported being in slightly more pain compared to the non-opioid group.
I really hope there’s further studies, so far the positive/negative benefits of one taking opiods seems to be really weighted in the negative column and if future research finds the same results the medical industry should move towards a different approach.