Opioid-induced hyperalgesia (OIH) is a paradoxical response whereby a patient receiving opioids for the treatment of pain can actually become more sensitive to painful stimuli over time. The type of pain experienced might be the same as the underlying pain or might be different from the original underlying pain.
If you think you are experiencing OIH, first seek a pain evaluation, ideally from a multidisciplinary treatment team of providers. First-line treatments include non-opioid analgesics (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, or NSAIDs, such as ibuprofen; and acetaminophen) and adjunctive medications such as antidepressants and anticonvulsants. In addition, nonpharmacological therapies such as therapeutic exercise, physical therapy, cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT), and complementary and alternative medicine (e.g., chiropractic therapy, massage therapy, acupuncture, mind-body therapies, relaxation strategies) may provide pain relief.