The number of painkilling prescriptions being issued to patients in Wales has risen 20% in the past five years.
Experts say thousands of patients are receiving painkillers because specialist services to help them cope with chronic pain are underfunded.
Painkillers cost the Welsh NHS almost £50m last year.
In Wales, 30% of people are in pain and one in eight people suffer chronic non-malignant pain.
Baroness Finlay, professor of palliative care at Cardiff University School of Medicine, and consultant at Velindre Cancer Centre, said GPs were under pressure to prescribe painkillers because pain management services were not always available.
Source~: BBC News. More…