We are currently dealing with an opiate epidemic in our country. It's important to understand that opiate medications are very addictive.
Due to aggressive research and the progression of science, we now have alternative medications that are available. These medications include ketamine, low dose naltrexone, and topical pain cream. The benefit of these formulations is that they can be specifically tailored for an individual based on the patients’ needs.
Ketamine was approved in 1970 as an anesthetic and is now used for pain, fibromyalgia, depression, migraines, CRPS, chemo-induced peripheral neuropathy, and post traumatic stress disorder. Ketamine works by inhibiting glutamate from binding to the NMDA-R receptor. It also has activity at norepinephrine, serotonin, muscarinic cholinergic, and voltage-sensitive calcium receptors.
Ketamine formulations available:
- Rapidly Dissolving Tablets (RDTS)
- Nasal Sprays
- Sublingual Droppers
- Transdermal Creams
Transdermal Pain Creams:
First line pain treatment options are typically oral pain medication. However, there are major concerns. Some of these include unanticipated side effects, prescription drug abuse, risk of overdose, patient non-adherence and lack of efficacy.
In addition, there are other challenges associated with oral pain medication related to gastrointestinal, renal, hepatic, cardiovascular issues, as well as sedation issues, decreased cognition, abuse, addiction, and general non-compliance.
Pain Creams are designed to administer high concentrations of pain medication directly into the site of pain for target relief. They provide quicker pain relief. It allows a much higher concentration of the actual medication to reach the tissue that needs it. This avoids the body’s “first-pass metabolism”, which can lead to the dangerous systemic side effects mentioned earlier. Doctors may customize these medications to meet the patient’s very unique needs. Because the pain creams are applied topically, they do not circulate throughout the entire body. This means you have powerful pain medication where you need it and less where you don’t. As a result, pain creams are less likely to interact with other medications being taken, therefore causing fewer side effects than other pain medications. No side effects, no addiction, and more precision to the area in pain. Three most common side effects being avoided are drowsiness, dizziness, and stomach irritation.
Benefits of Transdermal Pain Medication:
- Customizable Dosages, Formulations, and Drug Combinations
- Ability to Combine Multiple Drugs with Various Mechanism of Action
- Application Directly at the Site of Pain
- Fewer Side Effects
- More Convenient Resulting in Increased Patient Compliance
- Easy Adjustment or Titration to Meet Patient’s Needs
- Minimization of Abuse and Addiction Risk
- One Single Cream Can Target Multiple Receptors
- Limited Side Effects
- Limited Drug-Drug Interactions
Active Ingredients that We Use in Transdermal Creams:
- Methyl Salicylate