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Toradol for Pain Relief?


An explanation as to why a “Chicago Fire” episode prompted this nurse to post this on social media:

#1) Toradol is in the class of Nonsteroidal Anti-Inflammatories (NSAIDs is the acronym). It’s like Advil (aka Ibuprofen, generic name) but much, much stronger. NSAIDs are hard on our kidneys and Toradol is much stronger than most of the other NSAIDs, so it can’t be given for a long time---but is a great short-term pain reliever.

#2) NSAIDs aren’t addictive! So, no one would be stealing this to “feed a habit”!

#3) “PWUD” is an acronym for “Person Who Uses Drugs” which is the terminology used in health care. “Junkie”, the term used in this TV show, shows that these characters are uncaring and unwilling to help a PWUD.

#4) “Renal colic” mentioned by the nurse who posted this on social media is usually associated with the pain of a kidney stone in the ureter (tubes from the kidneys to the bladder). These are super painful and usually result in the people coming to ER—so using Toradol (NSAID) vs an opiate for short-term relief might be a good option.

#5) “Knee pain” is self-explanatory! Joints can really hurt! And NSAIDs (including Toradol) are once again a good option.

#6) I’ve asked for Toradol myself when opiates are being offered for my procedures. It worked great and I didn’t have any of the side effects of the opiates (constipation, nausea, over-sedation). Worth asking about for any procedure where pain relief is needed!

Takeaway messages:

-Always ask if Toradol might be an option for acute pain or pain with a procedure.

-Never watch medical TV shows or movies with a patient advocate unless you want to get lectures on why they are wrong!

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