The bad news for back pain sufferers is that analgesics (pain-killers) just don’t work.

This is the latest finding from an Australian team who looked at the effectiveness of currently prescribed medicines for treating this common problem.

Their study, which examined 35 trials involving more than 6000 people, found that non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) such as ibuprofen (Nurofen) are no better than a placebo, and perhaps do more harm than good.

Previous research has already demonstrated that paracetamol is ineffective and opioids are not much better, say the researchers from The George Institute in Sydney.

The findings are likely to impact on current clinical guidelines that continue to recommend paracetamol as a first-line analgesic, after NSAIDs, followed by opioids.

They also highlight the need for new therapies that actually work for back pain.

At LASER PAIN THERAPY AUSTRALIA, we recognise that inflammation is a very important cause of chronic musculo-skeletal pain, including back pain. Low Level Laser Therapy (LLLT) is one such therapy that assists the body’s immune system to break-down unhelpful inflammation, which in turn switches on the healing response and resolves the cause of the pain. By addressing the CAUSE of the pain, this healing results in pain being eliminated.

“Our results show that anti-inflammatory drugs actually only provide very limited short term pain relief,” says lead author, Associate Professor Manuela Ferreira. “They do reduce the level of pain, but only very slightly, and arguably are not of any clinical significance.” Dr Ferreira says that patients taking NSAIDs were 2.5 times more likely to suffer from gastrointestinal problems, although she says these results should be interpreted with caution given the short duration of exposure to NSAIDs in included trials.

“NSAIDs do not provide a clinically important effect on spinal pain, and six patients must be treated with NSAIDs for one patient to achieve a clinically important benefit in the short-term,” the researchers write in the Annals of Rheumatic Diseases.

“When this result is taken together with those from recent reviews on paracetamol and opioids, it is now clear that the three most widely used, and guideline-recommended medicines for spinal pain do not provide clinically important effects over placebo.”

Researchers suggest a stronger focus on prevention. This still leaves sufferers of ongoing pain left in the lurch. LLLT IS AN UNDER-RECOGNISED YET CLINICALLY PROVEN, LONG-ESTABLISHED AND SCIENTIFICALLY BACKED TREATMENT RESOLUTION FOR CHRONIC MUSCULOSKELETAL PAIN AND INJURY. LLLT is safe, risk-free and painless. It is highly effective and  as opposed to pain-masking achieves actual tissue healing and reduction of inflammation. Visit www.laserpaintherapy.com.au

Study: http://ard.bmj.com/content/early/2017/01/20/annrheumdis-2016-210597.abstract

South Yarra, Victoria
Suite 8, 200 Toorak Road
(Ground floor from William St)
South Yarra, Vic 3141
Ph: 03 8529 2225
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Map Location

Train: South Yarra Station, 100m, 1 minute walk
Tram: Route 58, stop  no. 127

Easy off-street free parking:
If driving you will find many free 1P and 2P spots on and around Toorak Rd near the clinic.

Our Mission

We are dedicated to helping our patients with the most technically advanced, proven and affordable medical therapies. Our treatment modalities offer evidence-based, safe, non-invasive and painless solutions to improve health, well-being and quality of life.


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