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Medical News & Perspectives
November 12, 2003

Researchers Probe Pathways of Pain

JAMA. 2003;290(18):2391-2392. doi:10.1001/jama.290.18.2391

Traditionally, physicians have had only blunt tools for combating pain. Aspirin and other nonsteroidal antiinflammatory drugs and more potent medications—namely opioids—have offered fairly generalized pain relief for many sufferers, but may have adverse effects.

Now, scientists are working hard to pinpoint more precise targets for pain therapy. The goal is to understand pain at a molecular level so that they can develop treatments aimed at specific molecules in pain pathways that relieve pain without causing adverse effects.

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