January 5, 2016
Shingles is caused by the varicella-zoster virus — the same virus that causes chickenpox. Anyone who’s had chickenpox may develop shingles. For some people, shingles pain continues long after the blisters have cleared. This condition is known as postherpetic neuralgia, and it occurs when damaged nerve fibers send confused and exaggerated messages of pain from your skin to your brain.
Pain medication can be used to help relieve discomfort caused by the rash, which can sometimes be severe. For some individuals with mild pain, over-the-counter analgesics may be all that is needed. Individuals with more severe pain may require stronger opioid pain medication.
These prescription medications are full of dangerous side effects and contraindications, which makes it difficult for many patients to take them. Natural shingles treatments are designed to work with your body to relieve your symptoms. For many individuals, results will be apparent within a short time after the first application. Natural medicines are safe, and the ingredients are regulated by the FDA according to the guidelines for OTC homeopathic formulation.
Source: Natural Shingles Treatment
February 28, 2015
Gout is a kind of arthritis. It can cause an attack of sudden burning pain, stiffness, and swelling in a joint, usually a big toe. These attacks can happen over and over unless gout is treated. Over time, they can harm your joints, tendons, and other tissues. Gout is most common in men.
An attack of gout can occur suddenly, often waking you up in the middle of the night with the sensation that your big toe is on fire. The affected joint is hot, swollen and so tender that even the weight of the sheet on it may seem intolerable.
Gout is caused by too much uric acid in the blood (hyperuricemia). The exact cause of hyperuricemia sometimes isn’t known, although inherited factors (genes) seem to play a role.
Uric acid may form crystals that build up in the joints. This causes the pain and other symptoms.
Fortunately, gout is treatable, and there are ways to reduce the risk that gout will recur.
January 14, 2013
If you’ve ever rubbed a topical pain reliever—a cream, gel or other product applied to the skin—on a sore muscle or joint, you’re familiar with the sensation of warmth or coolness that soon follows.
But if, instead, you experience burning pain or blistering, you must seek medical attention immediately.
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is warning that some consumers have reported receiving serious skin injuries while using certain over-the-counter (OTC) pain relievers applied to the skin to relieve mild muscle and joint pain.
OTC topical pain medications for muscles and joints include creams, lotions, ointments and patches. In many cases, burns where the product was applied occurred after just one application, with severe burning or blistering occurring within 24 hours. Some had complications serious enough to require hospitalization.
Do’s and Don’ts
FDA has the following advice for consumers using OTC topical muscle and joint pain relievers:
- Don’t apply these products onto damaged or irritated skin.
- Don’t apply bandages to the area where you’ve applied a topical muscle and joint pain reliever.
- Don’t apply heat to the area in the form of heating pads, hot water bottles or lamps. Doing so increases the risk of serious burns.
- Don’t allow these products to come in contact with eyes and mucous membranes (such as the skin inside your nose, mouth or genitals).
- It’s normal for these products to produce a warming or cooling sensation where you’ve applied them. But if you feel actual pain after applying them, look for signs of blistering or burning. If you see any of these signs, stop using the product and seek medical attention.
- If you have any concerns about using one of these products, talk to a medical professional first.
- Report unexpected side effects from the use of OTC topical pain reliever to the FDA MedWatch program
November 5, 2012
People who suffer chronic pain face a good news/bad news situation in choosing a treatment. There are powerful medicines called opioids that can help manage pain when prescribed for the right condition and when used properly. But when prescribed by physicians to patients who should not receive them, or when used improperly or for recreational purposes, they can cause serious harm, including overdose and death.
To reduce these risks as much as possible, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved a risk management plan for a class of opioid medications, known as extended-release (ER) and long-acting (LA) opioid analgesics, used to treat moderate to severe chronic pain. This plan is designed to ensure that health care professionals are trained on how to properly prescribe these medicines and how to instruct their patients about using them safely.
“There are a limited number of options available for the treatment of pain. Opioids are one option, but they carry a significant risk of misuse, abuse, overdose and death,” says Sharon Hertz, M.D., deputy director of FDA’s Division of Anesthesia, Analgesia and Addiction Products. “We’re trying to help physicians manage the risks and improve the safety of using these medicines.”
Opioids—so named because they are synthetic versions of opium—are narcotics that work by changing the way the brain perceives pain. They are available— in forms that include pills, liquids and skin patches—to treat moderate to severe chronic pain. Hertz explains that the ER/LA opioids are more of a safety concern than immediate-release formulas because they are stronger and either stay in the body longer or are released into the body over longer periods of time. The drugs that will be required to have a REMS include:
- Butrans (transdermal buprenorphine)
- Dolophine (methadone)
- Duragesic (transdermal fentanyl)
- Exalgo (hydromorphone)
- MS Contin
- Opana ER (oxymorphone).
- Oramorph (all morphines)
- OxyContin (oxycodone)
“When too much is taken, the risk of overdose is serious and it can cause death,” says Hertz. “We’ve seen that happen to people who overdose accidentally when they are taking an opioid for pain and to others who are taking it to get high.”
Hertz says that’s why it’s important that patients securely store their medications, both to prevent the accidental exposure of family members and to keep them away from others looking to get high.
And patients should not be sharing their pain relievers, Hertz says. “Just because it’s safe for the patient, doesn’t mean it’s safe for someone else,” she says, noting that there have been cases of people overdosing and dying after taking an opioid medication prescribed for a friend or family member.