Painkillers should be renamed 'pain relievers' to prevent people from taking a higher dose

Tuesday 11th February 2020 16:03 EST

Painkillers should be renamed ‘pain relievers’ to reduce unrealistic expectations, say medical experts. They argue the misconception that pain will be completely ‘killed’ makes people believe they should increase their dose. This is helping drive Britain’s overuse of opioids such as codeine and morphine, they warn.  Professor Jamie Coleman, who advises the Government on medicine safety, wants everything from paracetamol upwards to come under a new label. People take more pain relief than they should do because they believe the more they take the better it works and that’s not the case.’ Painkillers only work in the long term for one in ten people with chronic pain. But a major report by Public Health England last year revealed 5.6million people had taken opioids the previous year. Some 540,000 of these had been taking them for at least three years.

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