Treating Pain without Feeding Addiction: Study Shows Promise of Non-Drug Pain Management

August 4th, 2016

A new study shows the potential for patients who have both addiction issues and chronic pain to get relief from an approach that combines behavioral therapy and social support to help them manage their pain without painkillers that carry an addiction risk. The low-cost approach, grounded in psychological theories of pain, could help address the nation’s epidemic of addictions to opioid painkillers and illicit drugs.

“It’s a Catch-22 with potentially deadly consequences: People trying to overcome addiction can’t get treatment for their pain, because the most powerful pain medicines also carry an addiction risk.”
~Mark Ilgen, Ph.D., the study’s lead author and University of Michigan psychologist specializing in addiction research.
Posted in Content


A Project of the Governor's Institute on Alcohol & Substance Abuse and the North Carolina Society of Addiction Medicine.
Funded wholly or in part by the federal Substance Abuse Prevention and Treatment Block Grant Fund (CFDA #93.959) as a project of the NC Division of Mental Health, Developmental Disabilities & Substance Abuse Services.