Opioid medications do not perform significantly better than generic Tylenol for treating chronic back, hip, or knee pain, according to a study published Tuesday by the Journal of the American Medical Association.

The study sampled patients at Veterans Affairs primary care clinics who suffered from severe chronic back pain or hip or knee osteoarthritis pain. Participants were divided into two groups, with half receiving an opioid in the form of morphine, oxycodone, or hydrocodone, and the other half receiving generic acetaminophen or another nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug.

Notably, the opioids prescribed were immediate-release, not extended-release like popular painkillers MSContin and OxyContin.

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