- Diseases, Disorders & Conditions»
- Chronic Pain
A Prescription For Back Pain
The Prescription Pain Killer Vimovo
When it comes to your back, whether it be the lower or upper; there is nothing more challenging than individuals who have to suffer with the grueling and sometimes agonizing pain that they often experience as a result of their chronic back pain.
Be it pain that is a direct result of chronic inflammation involving the tissues around the spinal discs or herniated L3 and L4 discs located beneath the backs mid-section. It is real, unimaginable pain to these people-you get the point! I personally do not suffer from back pain, but do know a number of people who I am close to, who do suffer from pain which involves some section of their back. Back pain can be associated with arthritic back pain, or from pain that involves herniated discs that cause pain because of a tear within that leaks fluid from within, on a constant basis.
Believe me, just being around a person suffering from an achy back, and seeing what they routinely go through, is convincing enough for me. It is as if you go through the pain with this individual, particularly if is someone you live with, on a day in day out basis.
It is not uncommon for some of these people who experience some form of back pain, to go through various rituals, utilizing pain relief methods, ranging from cold ice packs, to placing heating pads on their backs; or in turn, eventually receive a series of epidural injections; in the spine at a local pain center.
In many cases, the epidural injections, do alleviate the terrible back pain that the afflicted one goes through. And not to mention, at the expense of just being able to experience a few days or more, free from back pain, but also in hopes of getting a good nights sleep as well.
Chronic back pain, for the most part, can originate either from an old injury that was sustained while in a car accident for example. And the accident or accidents did not have to had happened yesterday. The resulting pain could have developed from an accident that was experienced when you were a teen, if you are now in your mid-fifties or so. Back pain can also occur from a genetic factor, or maybe even passed along; or inherited from some family member, who also suffered from similar chronic back pain problems.
Scoliosis for example can be passed on from one generation to another, or could even skip a generation. Whatever the cause for the pain in the first place, it is never pleasant for that individual. Chronic depression is in many instances a result of chronic back pain and it has also been found to be a fact; that probably as many people who suffer from back pain; also suffer from some form of depression.
One could easily envision why this would be a valid point, because dealing with the constant pain that someone experiences from a sick back, if you will...one would be able to put one and one together and see why this would not be an understatement. Before we peer a bit deeper into a possible quick fix or alternative treatment method, for an ongoing back ailment, lets take a brief look at one major joint disease that contributes to back pain-arthritis.
Lets look at it from this viewpoint-when you take another example of a disease like cystic fibrosis, which I am using as an illustration. Here is a real debilitating disease that is also inflammatory. It is inflammatory in the sense that it often leaves the airways and lungs of the afflicted ones, inflamed with a thick mucous.
Arthritis on the other hand is an inflammatory type disease as well, that involves inflammation of the joints and cartilage. like arthritis there is no known cure for Cystic Fibrosis, only some temporary relief, mainly coming from the use of lipase based enzyme drugs.
In reference to our prior example using Cystic Fibrosis, there is only one form or stage of this disease that is currently known to the medical community. But when it comes to Arthritis, there is Osteoarthritis, and also rheumatoid arthritis or (RA). Not to mention other forms of this disease.
In fact there are as many as one-hundred different forms of arthritis, causing some type of pain, along with various signs and symptoms that affect the skeletal system and other organs that are sometimes involved. Symptoms that include stiffness, pain and swelling, are not uncommon from someone suffering from the pain and inflammation involving Arthritis. Arthritis simply defined, is a disease of the joints.
Osteoarthritis, on the other hand is a degenerative breakdown of a joint, usually resulting from excessive wear and tear of that particular joint. It comes on slower than the conventional form of arthritis and starts between the ages of forty to fifty. This type of arthritis is commonly found in the spine, but is also known to be confined to the hips, fingers and knees.
Cartilage damage is a key factor in the development of osteoarthritis and when this slippery, smooth and tough composition that the cartilage is made of, erodes you than have an equation that equals pain. One bone rubbing or touching another. There are resulting flare-ups or stiffness associated with the missing cartilage that is now causing the pain that someone often experiences as a result of osteoarthritis.
A second type of arthritis as previously mentioned is rheumatoid arthritis. (RA) effects more than seventy-five percent of women and usually begins between the ages of twenty-five to fifty. Rheumatoid Arthritis is unlike Osteoarthritis in that it is a disease that attacks the connective tissue in your body, tissue like that found in the back and musculature system throughout the body for example.
Usually a blood test confirming a high level of nuclear antibodies in your blood will point to a possibility of RA. Other autoimmune diseases that attack the body itself, are Scoliosis and Lupus to name a few. In rheumatoid arthritis the body attacks the synovial membrane lining the joints of your body. RA attacks attacks joints of the hand, feet and wrist also.
No matter whether it is the pain from some form of arthritis as described above, or from a ruptured, or even from that of a couple of herniated discs in your lower back, the equation no matter how you look at it, is always going to be some form of pain that is difficult for the patient to cope with.
For the most part we live in a pill-popping society where we want instant relief and gratification from our back pain or any other pain for that matter. Most of us have learned to rely on the miracles of modern medicine and to the extent of being pain free. As a result of new medications and treatments being introduced everyday most of really do enjoy a pain free society.
And sadly to say, a majority of the medications that relieve our pain do come with unpleasant side-effects to say the least. Back surgeries to relieve or replace damaged discs are not always successful and can also be very risky. I have spoken with both women and men acquaintances and both have told me, that titanium rods that were surgically implanted within their backs or cervical area were only thirty percent effective.
Afterwards many of these individuals, still had experienced some type of pain radiating from their backs or neck areas, months or even years after they had the procedures performed. So it goes to show that not every surgical procedure or orally introduced therapy, is going to make you feel pain free entirely. Particularly true, if you have always had a history of some sort of back pain throughout a good part of your life.
Believe it or not I have found, upon conversing with some folks, that having compression treatments made to the spine. That these type of treatments have been most helpful for these patients suffering from upper or lower back pain. Many chiropractic offices have spinal decompression machines. These machines literally stretch your spinal column, and over time create a larger space between the discs in your back. By doing so, this alleviates the painful rubbing that goes on when disc rub against disc.
The Decompression machine helps open the spaces up between damaged herniated discs so in .This in effect can help keep one pain free longer. And even though popular (NSAID'S)-Non-Steroidal Anti-Inflammatory Agents often are the best choice for relieving arthritic type pain, they also come with some health risks. Celebrex is of these popular NSAID'S for example. It has been on the market for awhile, but has also helped many temporarily escape the pain experienced with arthritic-type disease.
And in reference to the aforementioned health risks- the potential is there to cause cardiovascular complications as a down note. This is mostly true if you already have an underlying heart condition, that your Doctor should be aware of, already before starting you on any NSAID therapy.. If this is true in your case than, possibly this class of drugs even though very effective in relieving pain, is not a wise choice for you if you do have some underlying heart problem.
Also the chances of developing heart related problems are increased the longer you stay on NSAID'S. These drugs are not always meant to be taken long term, but on a short term basis. While on the topic of discussing this medication class, I thought it might be noteworthy to mention one prescription drug that had recently been introduced to the market. In addition I had spoke with acquaintances who told me that a lot of their physician's did not even know of, or did not even hear of the drug called VIMOVO. Vimovo has been on the market for about six months.
Its name is certainly a strange name for a prescription drug, but I've heard of stranger names given to prescription drugs. If it works-don't worry about the name. Even though Vimovo is considered an NSAID drug, it has an excellent safety profile, not only in terms of its overall side-effect profile, but also because of its tolerability after being introduced into the stomach, upon ingestion.
This drug can be taken with or without food and should be taken twice a day, once in the morning and twelve hours later before bedtime. Vimovo comes in two strengths, and can be written by your Doctor as 500/20 and a lower dose as 375/20. Most physicians like starting their patients out on a lower dose, just to see how they tolerate the medication, than titrate up to a higher dose later on.
Feedback from friends and relatives, in reference to this medication have informed me the 500 mg. dosage works the best for them. And they cannot believe how quickly this drug works in relieving individualized pain, without all of the side-effects that a lot of other medications for pain can often cause.
One of the reasons that Vimovo is tolerated so well, is because the other ingredient that is contained within this medication is Nexium. Nexium as some of you may know, is a (PPI) or Proton-Pump-Inhibitor. Drugs of this class are used for treatment in diseases like GERD. Vimovo contains either 500 or 375 mg. of Naproxen which is a popular pain-killer.
You can do a little more research on this prescription for pain at the following website...(https://www.vimovo.com). One of the ingredient's in Vimovo, Naproxen Sodium is also found in the over the counter analgesic or pain killer Aleve. The other, 20 mg. of Nexium is contained within the Naproxen, making its entry into the stomach easier and also without the consequences of gastric irritation.
Many individuals cannot take aspirin if it is not coated; or other medications for that matter that do not have some type of coating on them, because they basically are either sensitive to those other medications, or have an excess amount of acid in their stomachs to begin with. Naproxen if taken alone may irritate an individuals gastrointestinal tract. Particularly if that person has a problem with acid or even aspirin sensitivity already.
To make matters worse, some of these patients are already experiencing enough discomfort because of the pain radiating from their backs. And to add, these individuals certainly do not need an additional stomach problem; on top of an existing back problem that they are suffering from.
So when looking for a quick and reliable prescription that does initiate some form of pain relief, that is either inflammatory or degenerative in nature, it may be worth asking your Doctor about Vimovo for one, if all else fails. Everything does usually comes with a risk, whether it be risks from surgery, epidural injections, or that from utilizing prescription NSAIDS. For the most part the benefits that these medications provide, outweigh the risks. They are not only helping people live a more comfortable and pain free life. But also one that is also a much better quality overall.
Another point to emphasize in reference to back pain, is that with individualized back pain, many folks resort to sleeping pills, which I am not a big advocate of to begin with. And I am sure many a popular ones... Ambien or lunesta, to mention a few, can be found in many a medicine cabinet throughout the nation.
This is certainly a quick fix for helping someone in getting a good nights sleep, but in the long run, it can be a problem also. Sleeping pills can be very addictive after awhile, and certainly do not do the body any good in the long run. NSAID'S or other pain pills on the other hand, may not be the greatest resource mentioned either, but do provide a temporary non-addicting solution- allowing you to get the proper treatment while your sick back heals over a given time period, whether you have a chronic pain problem or not.
Being pain free allows you to basically enjoy life like it was really meant to be. Sleeping better, waking to a new day in a better emotional state of mind and being able to deal and cope with issues better. On the other hand, there are the natural ways that assist in alleviating pain. Getting plenty of exercise and maintaining a healthy weight can be especially beneficial. This is especially true, if you suffer you suffer from a chronic painful condition such as Fibromyalgia for example.
However this is easier said than done, because most who suffer from pain are literally too depressed to begin with, or in too much pain already to be able to exercise, and to exercise with the thought of keeping the excess weight off in the first place. Another natural ingredient I would like to mention to my audience and an alternative to a drug like Vimovo is called (MSM), or Methylsulfonylmethane.
MSM is a natural compund found in many green leafy vegetables, and does not damage the heart or stomach in the long run. It is usually taken as 2,000 milligrams daily, twice a day. It is also available in drugstores, but before trying this natural analgesic, first consult with your Doctor, particularly if you are taking any blood thinners - Coumadin for example. This product could interfere with the blood thinner's previously mentioned, or plavix, another popular blood thinner, sometimes referred to as anticoagulants.
Exercise and eating right as mentioned is definitely a step in the right direction when it comes to combating pain associated with inflammatory joint or non-inflammatory conditions by far. Alternative solutions in alleviating pain may be helpful for some, and then again do nothing more than just numb the back pain temporarily for others; who only get a small amount of relief by placing a block of ice or a heating pad on their lower or upper backs.
You may go to an orthopedic surgeon for a problem, they in turn may look at some x-rays of your back, for example. Than in turn they may refer you to a Rheumatologist, who tells you that they think you do not have Rheumatoid Arthritis and in the end, sends you back to the orthopedic Doctor or a pain specialist for further evaluation.
As you can see this is not really what we call a quick fix for pain. Not only can this be emotionally draining to a patient suffering from pain already. In the long run it can also be very expensive, even if you do have some type of health insurance. Sometimes this itself, even turns into a vicious cycle, so in reality you are no better off than you were when you first partook in this journey to seeking a prescription for pain relief.