The C.A.M. Report
Complementary and Alternative Medicine: Fair, Balanced, and to the Point
  • About this web log

    This blog ran from 2006 to 2016 and was intended as an objective and dispassionate source of information on the latest CAM research. Since my background is in pharmacy and allopathic medicine, I view all CAM as advancing through the development pipeline to eventually become integrated into mainstream medical practice. Some will succeed while others fail. But all are treated fairly here.

  • About the author

    John Russo, Jr., PharmD, is president of The MedCom Resource, Inc. Previously, he was senior vice president of medical communications at, a complementary and alternative medicine website.

  • Common sense considerations

    The material on this weblog is for informational purposes. It is not medical advice or counsel. Be smart, consult your health professional before using CAM.

  • Recent Posts

  • Recent Comments

    Using CAM to complement conventional pain treatments

    Researchers from Bastyr University in Seattle, Washington survey the use of CAM among people with chronic pain and wonder “whether opioids can be reduced by introducing such therapies.”

    First, the details.

    • 908 patients receiving opioids as a primary treatment method for chronic pain were surveyed.

    And, the results.

    • Pain problems included low back pain (39%), headaches (10%), and knee pain (7%).
    • The average duration of pain was 16 years.
    • The average morphine opioid dose was 92 mg/day.

    OK. But what about CAM?

    • 43% reported CAM use in the past year.
    • Massage (27%)
    • Chiropractic (18%)
    • Acupuncture (8%)
    • Yoga (6%)
    • Herbs and supplements (7%)
    • Prolotherapy (6%)

    Over half the sample reported that one or more of the CAM therapies were helpful.

    The bottom line?
    I guess I’m a pessimist. I see these results as a reflection of the difficulty in effectively treating chronic pain. Bastyr researchers see an opportunity to incorporate CAM into therapy.

    Good for them!

    7/14/07 10:08 JR

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