High Rate of Opioid Drug Abuse Brings Non-Opioid Pain Treatment Market in Limelight


Opioids are a class of drugs used for treating pain. They may be effective but there are many harmful effects associated with opioids such as overdose and addiction. The effectiveness of such drugs does not last long. Eventually, this leads to growth in the number of doses to manage pain. In addition, opioids have side effects such as suppressed breathing and constipation, add to the woes. According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services,116 Americans die daily due to opioid overdoses. In 2016, there were an estimated 64000 drug deaths, with opioid drugs being the reason in a considerable number of cases. To overcome these obstacles, non-opioids serve as a better alternative to opioids as they don’t have many side-effects and also doesn’t lead to addiction. These aspects are leading the pathway of the non-opioid pain treatment market toward growth.

Stringent Laws and Regulations to Have Great Influence on Growth Rate of Non-Opioid Pain Treatment Market

The harmful effects of opioids have made government intervention necessary on the decision of recommending opioids or not. Strict regulations and laws on minimizing the use of opioids are being implemented. Florida recently passed a law that requires physicians and health care providers to recommend safer alternatives to opioids such as non-opioids to prevent abuse of the opioid drug. A considerable rise in fatalities due to opioid overdose in Florida is a cause of concern. To reduce or avoid further damage due to opioids, Florida passed legislation to make it mandatory for physicians to recommend and create awareness about non-opioid options to treat pain during non-emergency situations. Doctors are also instructed to give an informational pamphlet titled ‘Alternatives to opioids’ created by the Florida Health Department to the patients. Such developments are poised to increase the growth rate of the non-opioid pain treatment market.

Drastic Developments in Non-Opioid Pain Treatment Market to Boost Growth

Research and development activities are at the forefront in the non-opioid pain treatment market as they bring new non-opioid pain treatment options to the table. Not just researchers but practicing surgeons are also involved in the development of non-opioid pain treatment. Dr, Paul Jacob, an orthopedic surgeon from Oklahoma has discovered ZILRETTA, a non-opioid pain treatment injectable for patients suffering from osteoarthritis (OA) knee pain. ZILRETTA is the only injectable non-opioid treatment for OA by the FDA that uses extended-release microsphere technology. Biowave, a company based in Connecticut sealed a deal with the U.S. military for application of its non-opioid smarter pain blocking technology for use across 32 veteran hospitals.

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New players and local manufacturers are upgrading their research and development activities to come up with novel non-opioid pain treatments for tackling the opioid epidemic. Kineta, a local biotech company based in Seattle is in the process of developing a new non-opioid pain relief drug in the form of an injection that will help in easing pain at the source without reaching the spinal cord and brain. Another local company, Algomedix aims to manufacture a non-opioid drug that targets a molecule located on nerve fibers throughout the body. The FDA seems positive in speeding up the approvals for the same. This motivates the manufacturers to research more efficiently.

Investments in non-opioid pain treatment drugs are on the rise as the growth prospects are high for the non-opioid pain treatment market. Government funding is also accelerating the growth rate of the non-opioid pain treatment market. Knopp Biosciences recently received a funding of $8 million for utilizing its Kv7 platform to develop novel non-opioid therapies for treating chronic pain. Tremeau Pharmaceuticals also raised $5.2 million in equity financing to develop non-opioid pain treatments for rare diseases.

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