Innovations in Pain Management: Morphine Combined with Omega-3 Fatty Acids

Carlos Horacio Laino*
Biotechnology Institute, National University of La Rioja, Argentina

© 2017 Carlos Horacio Laino.

open-access license: This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International Public License (CC-BY 4.0), a copy of which is available at: This license permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

* Address correspondence to this author the Biotechnology Institute, National University of La Rioja, Argentina Av Luis Vernet y Apostol Felipe. (5000) La Rioja. Argentina, Tel: 011-54-380-466915, Fax: 011-54-380-466915, E-mails:;


The treatment of acute and chronic severe pain remains a common major challenge faced by clinicians working with the general population, and even after the application of recent advances to treatments, there may still continue to be manifestations of adverse effects.

Chronic pain affects the personal and social life of the patient, and often also their families. In some cases, after an acute pain the patient continues to experience chronic pain, which can be a result of diseases such as cancer.

Morphine is recommended as the first choice opioid in the treatment of moderate to severe acute and chronic pain. However, the development of adverse effects and tolerance to the analgesic effects of morphine often leads to treatment discontinuation.

The present work reviews the different pharmaceutical innovations reported concerning the use of morphine. First, its utilization as the first medication for the treatment of moderate to severe cancer pain and non-cancer pain in patients is evaluated, taking into account the most common complications and adverse effects. Next, strategies utilized to manage these side effects are considered, and we also summarize results using omega-3 fatty acids (eicosapentaenoic acid and docosahexaenoic acid) as a monotherapy or as an adjunct to morphine in the treatment of pain.

Keywords: Analgesia, Side effects, Morphine, Omega-3 fatty acids, Cancer and non-cancer pain, Adjuncts.