Tramadol tied to higher mortality rates than NSAIDs in osteoarthritis patients


Tramadol tied to higher mortality rates than NSAIDs in osteoarthritis patients


A new study has shown that patients with osteoarthritis (OA) who were treated with tramadol had a significantly higher mortality risk during the first year of treatment when compared with patients treated with non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs).

They also found that tramadol users had a higher risk of cardiovascular disease, venous thromboembolism, and hip fractures than NSAID users.

Although the mortality risk of the use of tramadol has been highlighted previously, the risk comparison between tramadol and NSAIDs has previously been inconclusive.

In the present study, the team compared data from patients who received a first prescription of tramadol, naproxen, diclofenac, cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2) inhibitors, or codeine.

At the patients’ one year follow-up, it was found that tramadol users had a higher mortality risk than users of naproxen, diclofenac, and COX-2 inhibitors, but not higher than codeine users.

Tramadol users were also found to be at a higher risk of cardiovascular disease  and venous thromboembolism than users of diclofenac and COX-2 inhibitors, and a higher risk of hip fractures than users of naproxen, diclofenac, and COX-2 inhibitors.

Regarding the study, Thomas Schwenk, MD, from the University of Nevada, Reno, said: "Tramadol might be an option for patients in whom NSAIDs are contraindicated, but it should be prescribed as judiciously as traditional opioids."



Li L et al. Association of tramadol with all-cause mortality, cardiovascular disease, venous thromboembolism and hip fractures among patients with osteoarthritis. A population-based study. Abstract OP0191. Presented at the European League Against Rheumatism (EULAR) 2020 Congress on June 4, 2020.

MDedge. Tramadol mortality risk in osteoarthritis could outweigh benefits. 5 June 2020.

Where stress lives

Where stress lives

Researchers at Yale have discovered a neural home of the
feeling of stress. This insight may help people to deal with the

New and diverse experiences linked to enhanced happiness, new study shows

Middle Age May Be Much More Stressful Now Than in the '90s

Exercise improves memory and boosts blood flow to brain

Exercise improves memory and boosts blood flow to brain

There is much evidence suggesting that exercise improves
brain health, and some even suggests that fitness can ...

COVID-19: Managing mental health with yoga

COVID-19 - A mental health response - PART 3 - Reach


A new study has suggested that meeting physical activity recommendations may marginally ameliorate the association between television viewing and the risk of cardiovascular disease.

A new study has revealed a link between dementia and repetitive negative thinking (RNT).

A research team, led by ETH Professors Mescher and De Moraes, have discovered that bumblebees have a unique behaviour which may help to overcome such challenges. Bumblebee workers have been found to use their mouth parts to pinch the leaves of plants that are yet to flower – the damage this causes stimulates the plant to produce new flowers and bloom earlier.

New research, published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition has revealed that eating just one meal in high in saturated fat may reduce our ability to concentrate.

The COMPLEMENTARY MEDICAL ASSOCIATION (The CMA) © 2012. No part of this site may be reproduced without the express permission of The Complementary Medical Association. If used without prior consent a charge of US $1,000 per article, or mini section is paid (US $50 per word (minimum) will be charged. This is not meant to reflect a commercial rate for the content, but as a punitive cost and to reimburse The CMA for legal fees and time costs). Use of the contents, without permission will be taken as consent to bill the illegal user in full.