About Opioids and Pain ManagementPain is the most common symptom for which patients seek medical attention.(2) According to the American Pain Society, the prevalence of chronic pain in the United States is estimated to be 35.5% or 105 million people. Chronic pain conditions, such as osteoarthritis, back pain and cancer pain, affect at least 126 million adults in the U.S. annually and contribute to over $100 billion a year in direct health-care expenditures and lost work time.(2) Opioids are considered to be the most effective therapeutic option for pain and have over $10 billion a year in sales in the U.S. alone.(3,4) However, opioids cause significant problems for physicians and patients because of their serious side effects such as respiratory depression and sedation, as well as the risks they pose for addiction, abuse, misuse, and diversion. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has cited prescription opioid analgesics as being at the center of a major public health crisis of addiction, misuse, abuse, overdose and death.(5) A 2010 recent report from the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) notes that emergency room visits tied to the abuse of prescription painkillers is at an all-time high, having increased 111 percent over a five-year period.(6)
Nektar Presents Positive Proof-of-Concept Clinical Data For Its New Opioid Molecule, NKTR-181, At American Academy Of Pain Medicine's 28th Annual Meeting
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