Herniated Disc Treatment Ch5
Side Effects and Risks that must be Managed

Herniated Disc Treatments with Narcotics can be helpful
for Certain Types of Pain but there can be Side Effects

When other medications have not been helpful your doctor may prescribe narcotic pain medications. These can be very effective when you are experiencing back pain from a herniated disc but there can be side effects.






You can have a Bad Reaction
to any New Medicine

Any time you start a new medication there is a risk of allergic reaction or some type of intolerance.

It may cause itching, it may cause a headache, it may bother your stomach or some other problem may suddenly occur.

Narcotics are No Different

Narcotics are no different, you may have some type of reaction when starting a new narcotic drug, but there are some side effects that are more common with narcotics.

The Most Common Side Effect is Constipation

The most common side effect from narcotic pain medications is constipation.

This occurs because this group of drugs slows down the muscle contractions that move the contents through your GI tract.

Must Not Be Ignored

This can usually be treated and controlled with stool softeners or other mild laxatives.

Constipation is often more severe at higher doses and may limit how much of the medication you can tolerate.

Constipation can put you in the hospital and make you forget all about anything else that is bothering you.

A diet high in fiber can help
prevent constipation.

Image thanks to Ramon F Velasquez, via Wikimedia Commons

Other Variables can contribute to Your Constipation

Your diet, activity level, and other variables can also contribute to a problem with constipation. If you are feeling constipated for more than a few days it is important that you let your doctors know so that it can be treated before it turns into a more serious problem.

Other common side effects of narcotics include drowsiness, dizziness, feeling lightheaded, nausea or stomach upset, and flushing. Many of these are often temporary and will often pass after a few days as your body adjusts to the medicine. 

Other Possible Side Effects of
Herniated Disc Treatment with Narcotics

Stomach problems such as upset and nausea can be helped by having something to eat before taking your medicine.

Many different medications are not well tolerated on an empty stomach. 

Always mention any side effects you are having to your doctor.

If the side effects are intolerable your doctor may want to try a different drug to see if you tolerate that better. Unfortunately, these are all common side effects with all narcotic or opioid medications. 

Herniated Disc Treatment Index

Ch1 The Best Treatment for You 
will Depend on Your Symptoms

Ch3 Medications to Treat
Your Herniated Disc

Ch5 Medication Side Effects and Risks that must be Managed

Ch2 The Best Exercise
for a Herniated Disc

Ch4 Stronger Medications for
Your Herniated Disc

Ch6 Injection Therapies for a Herniated Disc

Ch7 Surgical Treatments for
Your Herniated Disc



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