Hi...I've just watched the programme on BBC1 with Dr Chris Val Tulleken who was trying to look at alternative ways to prescribing drugs particularly painkillers, antidepressants and antibiotics. One of the patients, Wendy, had chronic pain in her shoulder, and was taking a cocktail of painkillers each day for 20 years. The doctor then gave a a mixture of real and placebo tests over a few weeks and Wendy was to record her pain. It turned out that she's been gradually taken off the painkillers but her subjective measure of the pain didn't match what she'd actually been taking for the period of the experiment. The doctor thought that exercise is the best treatment for pain 'even a headache' he said. I'm sure this does help in many cases but I know that strong painkillers have helped my migraines. I think you have to look at each case individually rather than making a one size fits all. Some people definitely need painkillers some of the time in my view.
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