Considerations in addressing the opioid epidemic and chronic pain within the USA

Blaine Marshall, Michelle K. Bland, Ryan Hulla, Robert J. Gatchel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

27 Scopus citations


This article reviews the complexities of the opioid epidemic, considering recent research involving the current state of the opioid epidemic; chronic pain and its role in the crisis; the properties of opioids and how they interact with human neurobiology; the effectiveness and risks of opioids as a treatment for chronic pain; opioid addiction and dependence; and pharmacological and psychological interventions for opioid addiction, opioid dependence, and chronic pain management. Opioid abuse can be reduced with the availability and access to treatment facilities for opioid detoxification; using interdisciplinary treatment models for chronic pain, opioid addiction and dependence; conducting more research in the areas of opioid addiction and opioid dependence; and shifting to an increase in nonpharmacological, less invasive treatments for pain.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)131-138
Number of pages8
JournalPain management
Issue number2
StatePublished - Mar 2019


  • biopsychosocial
  • chronic pain
  • opioid addiction
  • opioid dependence
  • opioids


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