Study Finds Opioids No Better Than Placebo for Back or Neck Pain Relief What should readers take away from your report?

Response: Taking opioids does not relieve acute low back pain or neck pain, and leads to worse outcomes in the long term. So opioids should not be used for these conditions. What recommendations do you have for future research as a result of this study?

Response: The next challenge is to disseminate these results to clinicians and patients, and to reduce the use of opioids for these conditions. Is there anything else you would like to add? Any disclosures?

Response:  t is important that people who have been using opioids for a while not stop their medicines suddenly when they see this report, as this could lead to unwanted withdrawal effects. If you want to come off opioids, seek help from your doctor and other health professionals and do it together.

The study was funded by Australia’s National Health and Medical Research Council;
University of Sydney Faculty of Medicine and Health; and
SafeWork SA


Opioid analgesia for acute low back pain and neck pain (the OPAL trial): a randomised placebo-controlled trial

Caitlin M P Jones, Richard O Day, Bart W Koes, Jane Latimer, Chris G Maher, Andrew J McLachlan, Laurent Billot, Sana Shan, Chung-Wei Christine Lin,
on behalf of the OPAL Investigators and Coordinators*
The Lancet Published online June 28, 2023

The information on is provided for educational purposes only, and is in no way intended to diagnose, cure, or treat any medical or other condition. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health and ask your doctor any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. In addition to all other limitations and disclaimers in this agreement, service provider and its third party providers disclaim any liability or loss in connection with the content provided on this website.

Last Updated on June 29, 2023 by