Read the Reviews

"This is an in-depth look at the pharmacology of pain. It is well organized and coalesces a tremendous amount of information into an understandable and useful format. There are numerous figures sprinkled throughout the text, with several in color. The list of contributing authors is prestigious and provides a diversity of expertise and backgrounds. ... This is a well-written, comprehensive review of pain pharmacology that will be useful both to basic scientists with research interests in pain and to pain specialist clinicians."
Reviewed by Tammy L Burns, PharmD, BCPS, Research Director, The Cardiac Center at Creighton University, Omaha, NE, USA. The Annals of Pharmacotherapy, 2011;45:285.
"All of the chapters are first-class presentations of their topics ... The organization of the book facilitates the reader's comprehension with chapters discussing specific targets for pain relief so that all aspects of a specific pathway or set of receptors or channels are discussed in a coherent fashion. I am not aware of another book devoted to the pharmacology of pain that so thoroughly covers all of the important areas. ... This book is a must read for pain specialists who want to have a grasp of all of the key areas in our discipline."
Reviewed by John D. Loeser, MD, American Pain Society E-News, September 2011
"As one who thought he had a reasonable grasp of the basic pharmacology of analgesics, reviewing this volume was a wake-up call. There seems to have been an explosion in basic science, some of which already impacts on clinical practice, some of which is still in process.
"The opening section includes a chapter on applied pain neurophysiology and a proposal for a new taxonomy of analgesic drugs. The second section includes 15 chapters on specific pharmacological pain targets including cyclooxygenase, opioid, cannabinoid, glutamate and dopamine pathways and systems and the role of various ion channels in pain pharmacology. The third section includes an important chapter analysing vulnerability to opioid tolerance, dependence and addiction, as well as a chapter on the placebo response. The final section deals with pharmacological considerations in obstetrics, paediatrics, geriatrics, in patients with organ failure, and in palliative care.
"The chapters are detailed and well-referenced and there is good use of schematic flow diagrams. The editors and IASP Press are to be congratulated and if you want a cutting-edge review of the pharmacology of pain, then here it is."
Roger Woodruff, MD, International Association of Hospice and Palliative Care Newsletter, April 2010
"This publication by the IASP Press provides readers with an update on the current status of knowledge regarding the pharmacology of pain. … [This] comprehensive review of analgesic mechanisms provides a timely update in the literature, filling a gap that has spanned more than a decade. … The book is divided into four parts. The first section provides a current and concise description of pain neurophysiology. This portion is easy to read and presents a well-balanced review on this topic. The cleverly constructed framework guides readers from the basic mechanisms of peripheral nociception upwards to mechanisms of the central nervous system. The discussion aptly incorporates recent research into this subject, for example, the role of glial cells in pain transmission. … The second and most substantial section of the book offers readers a total of 15 chapters, each dedicated to specific pharmacological pain targets. Some examples include the opioid system, sodium channels, the transient receptor potential family, and the cannabinoid systems. The authors put forth tremendous effort in these chapters to provide concise yet comprehensive summaries of the function of these systems, and they were successful in their undertaking. … The chapter that deals with adrenergic and cholinergic targets provides an excellent review of sympatholytic interventions in patients with neuropathic pain. … Section three provides an appraisal of distinctive topics in the pharmacology of pain, including pharmacogenetics, placebo analgesia, animal models of pain, and vulnerability to opioid tolerance, dependence, and addiction. These chapters are organized well and easy to read, which should appeal to a wide range of readers looking for accessible synopses of recent research in these areas. … The fourth and final section deals with the clinical pharmacology of pain with a focus on specific populations, such as obstetrical, pediatric, or geriatric patients. … This section summarizes the fundamental principles regarding the management of these specific populations and is a suitable resource for the clinician. … Overall, this is a praiseworthy textbook that provides a comprehensive update on molecular mechanisms of pain transmission as well as the actions of present and perhaps future therapeutic agents. Although the text provides content relevant for students and clinicians managing painful conditions, the majority of the text would likely appeal to those more interested in fundamental mechanisms of drug action."
Canadian Journal of Anesthesia 2010;57:796-7. Reviewed by Geoff A. Bellingham, MD