I remember my father wearing these patches on his shoulders when I was a child. 30 years later, I decided to give them a try. I have chronic back pain, usually mild but it can flare up. Recently, the muscles around my shoulder blades was feeling really tight. Not so much painful but rather annoying and uncomfortable enough that it did keep me from sleeping. In the past, I would just either grimace & bear it for several nights until it the discomfort died down or else take advil. This time, I put a few patches of Salonpas on the areas and within an hour, the tightness was gone. I only did it for 1 night too.
I also recently had some pain in my hips/sacral area related to my lower back pain. It was an intense, tingling pain that started at my left hip and went down my thigh. The first time I experienced this pain, it was so intense I had to take ibuprofen combined with acetaminophen (yes, they can be combined--I checked first) every few hours for several days until I could see my chiropractor. I dislike taking meds so taking so much and so often was extremely rare for me. My chiropractor fixed me up but a few months later, I started having the same pain, a result of improper or over-stretching. This time, I used 1 patch of Salonpas on my left hip and 3 patches down the outside of my thigh. Again, in less than an hour, the sharp, tingling pain was gone. When I removed the patches after 8 hours, a milder tingling returned, so I put another patch just on my hip this time. I repeated 1 more time after this (total 1.5 days) and the pain stayed away. I can feel that my hip is still somewhat inflamed though so I am being more careful about not over-stressing it until it's fully healed, but the Salonpas made it bearable. When I saw my chiropractor after the 1.5 days I had been using the patches, he poked and prodded and said my hip wasn't too bad.
I noticed some other reviewers commenting that the patches are too small. At first I worried that I ordered the wrong (smaller) size but after checking, this is the same size I've been using and that I remember my father using. For larger areas on the body, multiple patches may be required but really, for the price, it's still a great deal.
I have not had too much issue with the patches not sticking to my skin. There was 1 particular area on my thigh where the patch didn't stick too well. The patches right next to that area stuck just fine. And I had the same problem when I changed the patches the next day. So I suspect there might have been some residue there, maybe from patches my chiropractor used when he hooked me up to the electrical stimulation machine.
Note: This product contains methyl salicylate, which is an NSAID that is a relative of aspirin. As I mentioned, I am not crazy about taking pain meds but at least the topical version isn't likely to cause complications with your liver or stomach.