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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Rethinking Pain Relief

SAN FRANCISCO () -- The American obsession with pain relief is being replaced with a new medical mantra: Know your pain.

A new theory of restraint, discussed at a recent conference of science writers, may mean consumers will receive fewer prescriptions for strong painkillers and more advice from doctors to go easy on over-the-counter pain medications, especially the more potent nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDS) that millions of people take daily for arthritis and muscular pain.

For example, the overuse of NSAIDS, such as the family of medications containing ibuprofen, has recently led to an explosion in the number of bleeding ulcers, accounting for 10,000-20,000 deaths each year.