MELVILLE, NY / ACCESSWIRE / August 30, 2023 / Chronic back pain is a significant issue in the United States, affecting millions of individuals annually. According to experts, up to 80% of the population will experience back pain at some point. Back pain can exist alone without nerve involvement and oftentimes, this is the most painful type of chronic pain. Additionally, spinal discs naturally degenerate with age, and as such, many people experience chronic back pain for no reason other than aging.
20% of individuals who experience chronic back pain will experience this pain for more than three months. This chronic pain can have a significant impact on an individual's quality of life, leading to reduced mobility, difficulty performing daily tasks and increased risk of depression and anxiety. The economic impact of chronic back pain is also significant, with billions of dollars spent every year on medical treatments, lost productivity and disability payments. According to a report from the National Library of Medicine, an estimated $200 billion is spent annually on the management of back pain.
Unfortunately, one of the most common medical responses to chronic pain is opioids as they are a strong class of pain relievers. Opioids, both legal versions like AbbVie Inc's Vicodin and illegal versions like heroin, are incredibly potent and addictive. Opioids can produce intense feelings of euphoria and pain relief and over time, the body becomes accustomed to the presence of opioids, and higher doses are needed to achieve the same effects. This leads to increased drug-seeking behavior and a higher risk of overdose. It's estimated that 10% of chronic pain patients misuse prescription opioids.
The United States is currently facing an opioid epidemic, but the problem is not new. Over 840,000 drug overdose deaths have been reported since 1999, with two-thirds of these deaths being attributed to opioids. However, in the past two years, it's been reported that an estimated two million Americans are addicted to opioids; overdose fatality rates have risen more than 20%. To make matters worse, the increase of fentanyl, a synthetic opioid, on the market has been fueling more deaths and overdoses.
Simply put, when millions of Americans have no viable treatment plan for chronic pain other than opioids, the risk of addiction, misuse and possible overdose rises. BioRestorative Therapies Inc. (NASDAQ:BRTX) ("BioRestorative"), a clinical-stage company specializing in stem cell-based therapies, is hoping to provide better treatment options for the millions of Americans who do not want to take opioids, have struggled with addiction or just want better care.
BioRestorative's leading product and novel drug BRTX-100 is an autologous stem cell product that uses the patient's own stem cells, which are harvested, cultured and then injected directly into the patient's body. BRTX-100 is a non-invasive treatment - the procedure is a single intra-discal injection that takes approximately 20 minutes. This product is currently being used in BioRestorative's ongoing phase 2 clinical trial.
BRTX-100 is a promising treatment for chronic back pain, as there are limited safety risks, and human data from similar studies show promising results with reduced pain and increased function. And while there is no treatment that will cure all patients, BioRestorative's biological therapy has the potential to be most successful. As America grapples with an opioid crisis, looking to the root of the problem which is often linked to chronic pain, can help treat not only individual patients but the country's drug dependency on opioids.
Other companies competing in the cell-based therapy or chronic pain treatment space include Mesoblast, Longeveron and Vericel.
To learn more about BioRestorative, visit its website.
SOURCE: BioRestorative Therapies, Inc.
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