ProHealth health Vitamin and Natural Supplement Store and Health
Home  |  Log In  |  My Account  |  View Cart  View Your ProHealth Vitamin and Supplement Shopping Cart
800-366-6056  |  Contact Us  |  Help
Facebook Google Plus
Fibromyalgia  Chronic Fatigue Syndrome & M.E.  Lyme Disease  Natural Wellness  Supplement News  Forums  Our Story
Store     Brands   |   A-Z Index   |   Best Sellers   |   New Products   |   Deals & Specials   |   Under $10   |   SmartSavings Club

Trending News

How Can You Benefit From Vitamin B12?

Discover Why Ashwagandha Can Be Used for Stress and Anxiety

Calorie restriction promotes longevity through effects on mitochondrial network

Lower magnesium levels linked with increased mortality risk during up to 40 years of follow-up

Higher resveratrol dose linked to lower glucose levels in type 2 diabetics

Tryptophan's Possible Effects for Your Health

What Is Bitter Orange?

Black Tea Is Great for Your Gut

Drug can dramatically reduce weight of people with obesity

Ashwagandha Helps Hormones - Aids Arthritis

 
Print Page
Email Article

Abrupt opioid withdrawal – as after surgery - increases pain sensitivity

  [ 13 votes ]   [ Discuss This Article ]
www.ProHealth.com • July 16, 2009


Medical University of Vienna researchers discover the mechanism involved, and how to avoid the effect

Opioids are the oldest and most effective analgesics. They are often used, for example, during operations or when other forms of treatment fail. This is because opioids (unlike other analgesics) bind to opioid receptors, which are highly effective in depressing the activity of nerve cells responsible for transmitting information about pain.

On abrupt withdrawal - for example, after surgery - this can lead to an abnormal, excessive increase in pain sensitivity. A research project conducted by the Department of Neurophysiology at the Center for Brain Research at the Medical University of Vienna has now been able to explain what causes this phenomenon. These pioneering results were published July 10 in the journal Science.*

Painful "Cold Withdrawal"
The abrupt withdrawal ("cold withdrawal") of opioids leads to "long-term potentiation" (LTP) of synaptic strength in the spinal cord's pain pathways. This in turn leads to sustained and increased sensitivity to pain.

In the brain, LTP is a physiological mechanism for learning and memory. An activity-dependent increase in synaptic transmission between the nerve cells at their contact points, the synapses, can be very long-lasting.

For example, in the spinal cord pain stimuli can trigger LTP and lead to a long-lasting "pain memory." This study proves for the first time that opioids also leave a "memory trace" in the pain system if they are withdrawn abruptly. "We were rather taken aback ourselves by the results," said project manager Professor Jurgen Sandkuhler.

"Until now, we had assumed that only strong or sustained pain could induce LTP in the pain system."

On making this discovery, Prof. Sandkuhler and his team set about deciphering the molecular mechanisms of this process. Dr. Ruth Drdla and Matthias Gassner, the two main authors of the study, were able to show that abrupt withdrawal - similar to a pain stimulus - increases the concentration of calcium ions in the spinal cord's nerve cells.

Excessive Calcium Ions in Spinal Cord's Nerve Cells
Calcium ions are important intracellular messengers that activate numerous enzymes and consequently also lead to LTP. With memory LTP, calcium ions flow into the brain's nerve cells via NMDA receptor channels. Therefore, the research team conjectured that blocking these calcium channels could also prevent LTP in the spinal cord. "To test our theory, we used selective blockers that only close off NMDA receptor-type calcium channels," explains Prof. Sandkühler.

The results showed that these blockers, which are also available as drugs, did indeed reliably prevent LTP on the withdrawal of opioids. "However, the blocker has to be administered in good time before the start of the withdrawal," adds Prof. Sandkühler. The team also made another discovery that is important for the treatment of pain:

If the opioid is reduced slowly and in a controlled manner instead of being withdrawn abruptly, it is quite straightforward to prevent the LTP caused by opioid withdrawal and, therefore, the onset of withdrawal symptoms.

This latter result of the FWF-supported project in particular shows that fundamental medical research can indeed provide concrete recommendations for everyday medicine. These new findings mean that essential opioids can be applied even more reliably in the treatment of pain - without any nasty surprises once they are withdrawn.

____

* Citation: “Induction of synaptic long-term potentiation after opioid withdrawal,” Drdla R, Sandkuhler J, et al. Science, Jul 10, 2009

Source: Austrian Science Fund news release, Jul 7, 2009




Post a Comment

Featured Products From the ProHealth Store
Mitochondria Ignite™ with NT Factor® Ultra ATP+, Double Strength Ultra EPA  - Fish Oil


Article Comments



Be the first to comment on this article!

Post a Comment


 
Optimized Curcumin Longvida with Omega-3

Featured Products

Optimized Curcumin Longvida® Optimized Curcumin Longvida®
Supports Cognition, Memory & Overall Health
Energy NADH™ 12.5mg Energy NADH™ 12.5mg
Improve Energy & Cognitive Function
Vitamin D3 Extreme™ Vitamin D3 Extreme™
50,000 IU Vitamin D3 - Prescription Strength
Ultra ATP+, Double Strength Ultra ATP+, Double Strength
Get energized with malic acid & magnesium
Mitochondria Ignite™ with NT Factor® Mitochondria Ignite™ with NT Factor®
Reduce Fatigue up to 45%

Natural Remedies

Joint Aches May Have Met Their Match in Curcumin Joint Aches May Have Met Their Match in Curcumin
Fight Inflammation and Promote Cognitive Health with High-OPC Grape Seed Fight Inflammation and Promote Cognitive Health with High-OPC Grape Seed
Aches and Pains? A Simple Solution You'll Love Aches and Pains? A Simple Solution You'll Love
Sunshine Vitamin Has D-lightful Health Benefits Sunshine Vitamin Has D-lightful Health Benefits
Restore Youthful Cognition and Well-Being Restore Youthful Cognition and Well-Being

CONTACT US
ProHealth, Inc.
555 Maple Ave
Carpinteria, CA 93013
(800) 366-6056  |  Email

· Become a Wholesaler
· Vendor Inquiries
· Affiliate Program
SHOP WITH CONFIDENCE
Credit Card Processing
SUBSCRIBE TO OUR NEWSLETTERS
Get the latest news about Fibromyalgia, M.E/Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, Lyme Disease and Natural Wellness

CONNECT WITH US ProHealth on Facebook  ProHealth on Twitter  ProHealth on Pinterest  ProHealth on Google Plus

© 2017 ProHealth, Inc. All rights reserved. Pain Tracker App  |  Store  |  Customer Service  |  Guarantee  |  Privacy  |  Contact Us  |  Library  |  RSS  |  Site Map