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Hope for chronic pain sufferers as new drug becomes available

From The Telegraph (UK):

Many people on opiate-based drugs for chronic pain suffer unpleasant side effects from them including constipation and vomiting.

A new drug called Palexia becomes available for doctors to prescribe today, which trials show could be tolerated by many more.

Pain management experts hope it will mean more patients sticking with their medication and getting the relief they need.

Palexia, the brand name of the drug tapentadol, works in two ways. First, it works as a traditional opioid, stopping pain signals getting through nerve junctions in the spinal cord called synapses, and reducing the perception of pain in the brain itself.

Secondly, it works to stop pain messages being transmitted by reducing levels of a neurotransmitter called noradrenaline.

It is the first such painkiller on the British market to work in both these ways.

Posted: 5/17/2011 8:32:00 AM

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