A 33-year-old member asked:
what is the difference between opiate and narcotic analgesic?
4 doctor answers
Dr. Julian Goldman answered
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 answered
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 answered
29 years experience Anesthesiology
None: They are just two different names for the same medications.
Answered on Jun 5, 2016
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