Opioid induced Hyperalgesia (OIH)



Opioid Addiction Detox South Florida

Pain and Addiction

When patients take opioid pain medications for a while as part of a pain management program, they become less effective. That is called tolerance. In addition, the pain medications may actually WORSEN pain, which is referred to as OIH ( Opioid induced Hyperalgesia ). This happens when patients use opioids over a long term, particularly high doses.

How it is possible that medications designed to manage and reduce pain can, over time, actually increase it? Tolerance happens because the human nervous system adapts to those medications and actually becomes stimulated.

Consider this analogy:

If you placed a red-hot metal rod on a thermostat controlling the air-conditioning in a room, what would happen? The AC would keep going and the temperature of the room will go even lower, yet the thermostat thinks it is really hot. That is what happens to the nervous system with OIH; there is a disconnect between the treatment and the pain.

The way to correct this situation is to remove the hot metal rod. The temperature of the room would then revert back to what it is supposed to be. Similarly, reducing opioid dose or detoxification from these medications will resolve the OIH and pain will actually be reduced.

At Comprehensive Pain Medicine, we treat patients in pain who suffer from OIH and other complications of opioid treatment, such as pain medicine addiction.

If you or a loved one is suffering from pain medication addiction or require pain management, contact us today for a confidential consultation at (954) 545-0106. We are located conveniently close to I - 95 in Pompano Beach, Florida.