A 33-year-old member asked:
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what is the difference between opiate and narcotic analgesic?

4 doctor answers
Dr. Julian Goldman
35 years experience Anesthesiology
Usually the same: For practical purposes in healthcare, the words are equivalent. Originally, "narcotic" was used more generally, especially for a sleep-inducing substance. It also has legal/regulatory implications as used by dea. Opiates and opioids are morphine-like drugs that are primarily used to treat pain. In the us healthcare environment, we usually use the words opioid, opiate, and narcotic interchangeably.
Answered on Feb 11, 2013
Dr. David Sherer
36 years experience Anesthesiology
Same: They are esentially refering to the same class of medicines. Opiates refer to drugs that act specifically at opiate receptors, as do the narcotics.
Answered on Apr 7, 2013
Dr. Richard Pollard
29 years experience Anesthesiology
None: They are just two different names for the same medications.
Answered on Jun 5, 2016
Dr. David Rosenfeld
26 years experience Pain Management
The same: They are two words that describe the same thing.
Answered on Jul 3, 2013

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Related questions:

A 47-year-old member asked:
Dr. Julian Goldman
35 years experience Anesthesiology
Usually the same: Originally, "narcotic" was used more generally, especially for a sleep-inducing substance. It also has legal/regulatory implications as used by dea. O ... Read More
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A 40-year-old male asked:
Dr. Ronald Herring
16 years experience Anesthesiology
Narcotics: "Boost" here means an overall increase in pain relief through a synergistic effect of narcotics plus NSAIDS. They have different mechanisms of action. ... Read More
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Dr. Bruce Jacobs
Specializes in Family Medicine
Mobic, (meloxicam) toradol: ibuprofen,aleve (naproxen)
A 31-year-old member asked:
Dr. Ernesto Pretto jr.
43 years experience Anesthesiology
No: Hypertension is not one of the known side effects of narcotics.

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