In many cases, patients are prescribed medication treatment before receiving other forms of therapy. Medications for pain may include:
Non-aspirin pain relievers – These drugs, such as acetaminophen (Tylenol), relieve minor pain and are sometimes combined with other drugs to provide greater pain relief.
Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) – Available over the counter or by prescription, these drugs — including ibuprofen (Motrin) or naproxen (Aleve, Naprosyn) — are used to treat pain and inflammation.
Corticosteroids – Available only by a prescription, these cortisone-like drugs are used for more severe inflammatory conditions.
Opioid pain medications – These morphine-like drugs are often prescribed short term for acute pain or for cancer pain. Occasionally, doctors prescribe them for chronic, non-cancer pain.
Antidepressants – Originally designed to treat depression, these drugs can be useful for relieving certain types of pain. Antidepressants may also promote sleep, which can be difficult when you are in pain.
Second Line Treatments
Often, medications alone aren’t enough to treat chronic pain. Other treatments may be more effective than medications, and medication may be more effective when combined with other treatments. Other available treatments offered by our pain centers may include: