Integrative Medicine in the Department of Defense and the Department of Veterans Affairs: Cautious Steps Forward

The management of acute and chronic pain is one of the most difficult challenges confronting medicine today. Drug therapies used to counter pain can be complicated by dangerous side effects, overdose, and addiction. In fact, some emergency rooms avoid prescribing opioids for chronic pain as a means of mitigating the risk of becoming a “gateway” to opioid addiction.