Considered as one of the top analgesics today, Tramadol is perhaps one of the more popular and most powerful reliefs for severe pain in existence. According to a study, it is one of the top ten popular drugs for arthritis prescribed by Rheumatologists. And doctors generally agree that it is most usable among other available analgesics today. But what exactly are the Tramadol drug uses, and what makes it perhaps one of the more important drugs ever created in the history of medicine?
How analgesics work
Tramadol is the generic name of medicines such as Ultram, Ralivia, and FlashDose. All of them, however, work the same way—just like morphine, they change the brain receives pain. To understand this better, it is important to know how the body feels pain, and what the Tramadol drug uses are. The body has something called pain receptors. For example, when a person pricks his finger or cuts himself, the tissue damage caused by the injury will be registered by the nociceptors, which will then be sent from the spinal cord to the brain, a part called the thalamus.
The thalamus then sends these signals to different areas of the brain such as the somatosensory cortex (the part responsible for sensations in the body), the limbic system (the part responsible for the emotions a person feels), and the frontal cortex (the part responsible for thinking). This means the pain felt by the body is not automatic, although it may seem that way. Therefore, to prevent the body from feeling pain, the medicine does not actually act on the injured part itself. Pain relievers—or analgesics—work on the brain, since it changes how the brain functions.
The likes of Tramadol takes action on a receptor called the opioid, and other systems in the brain such as the noradrenergic system (which acts as a neurotransmitter and a hormone) and the serotonergic system (a monoamine neurotransmitter responsible for the modulation of mood, metabolism, and sexuality, among others).
How Tramadol works
So it is obvious why Tramadol drug uses work on these receptors—to change the signals they change to the brain, hence relieving pain in the body. However, despite the years of research that this medicine has undergone—and despite its years of existence—it is still not yet known how Tramadol actually works (what is known is what part of the brain it acts on).
However, due to its opioid and non-opiod properties, it is a very unique analgesic, unlikely many others that exists today. As an analgesic or a pain reliever, it is prescribed for moderate to severe pain. These types of pain that Tramadol drug uses work on and can remedy include neuropathic pain and pain due to osteoarthritis. Currently, there are studies and researches determining of Tramadol can cure or relieve symptoms due to migraine headache, opiate withdrawal syndrome, restless legs symdrome, and premature ejaculation, among others, although nothing conclusive regarding this manner is released to the public.
Tramadol is a prescription drug—meaning, one would need a prescription from a doctor to get it—due to its powerful effects. Still, it is considered safe. And while it can cause a number of side effects, these common adverse side effects are basically mild (like nausea, dizziness, vomiting, and constipation). Tramadol is available in 50mg tablets and the so-called extended release tablets (from 100mg to 300mg), to be taken every four to six hours a day.
Tramadol in higher dosage are usually used by individuals suffering from chronic pain and those who need long-term treatment. Of course, it is the doctor who will decide the dosage of the drug to be used by the patient, since the dosage depends on several factors, such as the patient’s bodily functions and the medical conditions he has suffered or is suffering from.
Why use Tramadol?
Tramadol is very usable because it is available in various forms and it can be taken it various ways. Tramadol is mainly taken orally, but it can also be taken through IV injections, powders, suppositories. Perhaps the biggest advantage of using Tramadol is that is not a NSAID, or a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug.
For one, because Tramadol is not a NSAID, one can take both drugs together without the risk of drug interactions (the use of two nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs together can cause adverse—even fatal—effects, such as colon cancer and compilations in the cardiovascular system). Also, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs have adverse side effects—such as combinations on the cardiovascular system and high blood pressure—making the use of NSAIDs inappropriate for the elderly.