In January of 2016 The State of Ohio updated its Guidelines for the Management of Acute Pain Outside of Emergency Rooms. In 2014, 2,482 individuals in Ohio died from an unintentional opioid- related overdoses, making opioid overdoses one of the leading causes of injury-related death in Ohio. The Governor's Cabinet Opiate Action Team and the workgroup on Opioids and Other Controlled Substances was challenged with creating guidelines that help healthcare providers better serve their patients with pain, while reducing the potential for overdoes and death. The goal of these guidelines is to steer patients to individualized care that returns their function to baseline or pre-injury status as opposed to complete resolution of pain.
The guidelines now state that non-pharmacologic therapies should be considered as first-line therapy for acute pain for at least 6 weeks. Non-pharmacological treatments include ice, heat, positioning, bracing, wrapping, splints, stretching and directed exercise, massage therapy, acupuncture, and chiropractic adjustments.
These guidelines will help practitioners provide alternatives to previously common opioid prescriptions. These non-pharmacological interventions are healthy alternatives that have very few side-effects and non-addictive properties.