Typically musculoskeletal pain is treated with narcotics, NSAIDs, or both. Although these approaches may briefly treat the pain, patients are at risk for unwanted side effects or adverse reactions.


Narcotics – Side effects include lightheadedness, respiratory depression, nausea, vomiting, constipation, hepatotoxicity (liver damage), abuse potential, and overdose (accidental/intentional).


NSAIDs (Non-Steroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs)- Adverse reactions include GI (gastrointestinal bleed), peptic ulcer, constipation, heartburn, rash, tinnitus (ringing in ears), headache, and rash (discontinue if rash occurs).


These systemic side effects or adverse reactions can be avoided by focusing on the area or region of pain with a prescription-strength topical compound. For example, at Palmetto Physical Medicine, our health care providers prescribe a topical compound that includes Ketoprofen and Lidocaine. Ketoprofen is an NSAID but in its topical form bypasses the gastrointestinal system therefore avoids systemic reactions. It is used to treat pain and swelling due to strains, sprains, backaches or arthritis. Lidocaine in its topical form is an anesthetic that works by preventing nerves from sending painful impulses to the brain. This is an important approach in decreasing pain and inflammation.


A medical compound including Ketoprofen and Lidocaine is an effective topical approach and great alternative to treating the region of pain.