Patients needing oral surgery such as wisdom teeth removal often worry about post-op pain relief. There is some exciting news! And it doesn’t involve potentially addictive narcotics (also known as opioids) that come with a variety of unpleasant side effects.
It is called Exparel®.
The Goal of Texas Oral Surgery Specialist, the office of Chris Tye, MD, DDS, is to provide top-notch dental and oral surgical care to patients. However, Dr. Tye at TXOSS is also concerned about patient safety and comfort.
Another concern is the opioid crisis in America.
As a Board-Certified Oral Surgeon, Dr. Tye realizes there can be risks with opioids.
That is why Texas Oral Surgery Specialists proudly offers Exparel® to our surgery patients in Colleyville, TX. Patients can have a narcotic free oral surgery recovery. Thanks to Exparel®, many of our patients no longer require opioids for post-op pain relief.
What is Exparel®, and does it provide adequate pain relief?
Exparel® is a revolutionary alternative non-opioid option for pain that is changing pain management for the better. In addition, it is helping us fight the war on opioids. This non-narcotic pain medication is a one-time dose administered at the surgical site during surgery. It starts to work right away, and pain relief continues for up to three days—when post-op pain is the highest.
Rather than a pain pill, which affects the entire body, Exparel® numbs the surgical area, reducing or relieving post-op pain. In fact, studies have shown that patients who received Exparel® reported 14 percent less pain than those taking pain medications. In addition, patients needed 78 percent fewer narcotics than those who did not receive it.
Most are familiar with the local anesthetic lidocaine, which numbs areas for painful procedures like stitches or minor dentistry. While quite effective, the numbness wears off in a few hours, relatively quickly.
Exparel® is a brand name for slow-released bupivacaine. Just like lidocaine, it blocks the nerve receptors that are responsible for pain. Unlike lidocaine, which wears off in an hour or so, the effects last for up to three days. This can significantly reduce or eliminate the need for narcotics.
Why avoid narcotics for pain relief?
Almost 64,000 Americans died from drug overdoses in 2016 alone. President Trump made a nationwide call to healthcare providers to reduce the number of narcotic prescriptions written for pain relief. In October 2017, he declared the opioid crisis in our great nation a public health emergency.
This is why the Oral Surgeons at Texas Oral Surgery Specialists always consider the risks and benefits when writing narcotic prescriptions. While patient comfort is important, there are many potential risks.
- Approximately seven percent of patients who receive narcotics for pain relief abuse them.
- Young adults are three times more likely to progress to dependence when given narcotics for pain.
- Narcotics can cause drowsiness and confusion. This makes certain activities, such as driving, dangerous.
- Opioids can cause nausea, vomiting, and constipation.
- They can slow down recovery and return to work.
- Unused pills (estimated at 100 million pills per year) can be misused by others.
- It can be very dangerous, or even lethal, if patients drink alcohol or take certain medications while taking narcotics.
Learn More About Exparel® Today
If you need oral surgery and want to know more about Exparel®, our team is ready to answer your questions for Opioid Free Oral Surgery.
Call us at (817) 552-3223 today to schedule a consultation appointment. If you are a candidate, Dr. Tye can administer Exparel® during a procedure for opioid-free recovery. Patients will appreciate the effective pain relief while avoiding the risks and negative effects of narcotics.