Opioid Therapy in Chronic Pain

Phys Med Rehabil Clin N Am. 2015 May;26(2):201-18. doi: 10.1016/j.pmr.2014.12.001. Epub 2015 Feb 14.


Opioids remain the strongest and most effective analgesics available. The downside is that they are addictive and potentially dangerous. Throughout history, although recognizing the value of opioids in treating serious pain, especially acute pain and pain at the end of life, there has been caution about using opioids to treat chronic pain. This article presents how opioids should be used to treat chronic pain considering recent concerns about their efficacy and safety.

Keywords: Addiction; Dependence; Opioid dependence; Pain management.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Analgesics, Opioid / therapeutic use*
  • Chronic Pain / drug therapy*
  • Humans
  • Opioid-Related Disorders / prevention & control*
  • Pain Management
  • Pain Measurement
  • Patient Selection


  • Analgesics, Opioid