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When to Prescribe Opioid Therapy for Headaches

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When to Prescribe Opioid Therapy for Headaches
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  • Overview

    Though many therapies exist for the treatment of headaches, some chronic headache cases do not respond to prescribed therapies. In a portion of these cases, opioid medications are offered to help patients find relief. But prescription of opioids can present additional problems, including increasingly recurrent headaches. This leads us to the question: which of our patients should receive opioid therapy for their headaches?Dr. Joel Saper, director of the Michigan Head Pain and Neurological Institute in Ann Arbor, Michigan, examines this critical question and much more with host Dr. Mark Nolan Hill. Which patient populations are most vulnerable to the potential problems associated with narcotic therapy? Are we properly advising our patients on the risks of narcotic misuse and overuse, as well as the importance of dose limitations--and if not, how can we improve our efforts in this area?

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Details
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  • Overview

    Though many therapies exist for the treatment of headaches, some chronic headache cases do not respond to prescribed therapies. In a portion of these cases, opioid medications are offered to help patients find relief. But prescription of opioids can present additional problems, including increasingly recurrent headaches. This leads us to the question: which of our patients should receive opioid therapy for their headaches?Dr. Joel Saper, director of the Michigan Head Pain and Neurological Institute in Ann Arbor, Michigan, examines this critical question and much more with host Dr. Mark Nolan Hill. Which patient populations are most vulnerable to the potential problems associated with narcotic therapy? Are we properly advising our patients on the risks of narcotic misuse and overuse, as well as the importance of dose limitations--and if not, how can we improve our efforts in this area?

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