How the Opioid Epidemic Affects Chronic Pain Patients

“It is borderline genocide,” said DeLuca, 37. “You are allowing [chronic pain patients] to go home and essentially suffer until they kill themselves.” Last year, Lauren DeLuca went to the emergency room in the middle of the night, violently ill and in pain with a pancreatic attack. Despite the fact that she was passing out and vomiting profusely, DeLuca said that she received little help. “I was essentially turned away,” she told The Fix. “Everywhere [I went] I was being accused of lying, accused of making it up.” Over the next three weeks, DeLuca lost 20 pounds, unable to eat because of her pain and vomiting. Doctors, she said, were too paralyzed by the fear of overprescribing powerful opioid pain relievers to help her. Eventually, DeLuca’s arteries and organs were permanently damaged by her inability to eat, halting her plans to start a family, and leaving her with lifelong health issues. Even after all that, she had issues accessing the opioid pain relief that would make her life bearable. “I’m a continuous level 10 pain. If you don’t medicate me, I’m screaming,” she said. Frustrated and desperate, DeLuca founded the Chronic Illness Advocacy and Awareness Group, first as a Facebook community and later as an advocacy organization that aims to help chronic pain patients who feel that new opioid regulations put their lives at stake. “It is borderline genocide,” said DeLuca, 37, who...
Source: World of Psychology - Category: Psychiatry & Psychology Authors: Tags: Disorders Health-related Medications Publishers Substance Abuse The Fix Chronic Pain opioid addiction Opioids Source Type: blogs

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What is a Benzodiazepine? Benzodiazepines are a prescription drug sedative used to treat a variety of conditions. They are classified as Schedule IV in the Controlled Substances Act. Some of the conditions that Benzodiazepine can treat include: Insomnia Anxiety Seizures Muscle tension Panic disorders When used as prescribed under the supervision of a medical professional, Benzodiazepines can be very useful in the treatment of these disorders. Many people are able to live healthy, happy lives while taking Benzodiazepines to curb the symptoms of their various conditions. However, because of the addictive nature of Benzodia...
Source: Cliffside Malibu - Category: Addiction Authors: Tags: Uncategorized benzo benzodiazepines prescription drug abuse prescription drug addiction prescription drug use prescription pills Source Type: blogs
With all the news media accounts and reports from governmental health organizations about the opioid epidemic, including the 70,237 drug overdose deaths in 2017, a newly emerging threat is gaining attention: use and misuse of benzodiazepines, opioid drugs and Z-drugs. Specifically, combining these three drugs can create a deadly combination that snuffs out lives. Benzodiazepine Overdose Deaths on the Rise Benzodiazepines, a class of sedative narcotic drugs including Xanax and Valium used to treat anxiety, insomnia and other disorders and classified as Schedule IV under the Controlled Substances Act by the Drug Enforcement ...
Source: Psych Central - Category: Psychiatry Authors: Tags: Addictions Substance Abuse Suicide Source Type: news
We  learned last week that the 2017 drug overdose numbers reported by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention clearly show most opioid-related deaths are due to illicit fentanyl and heroin, while deaths due to prescription opioids have stabilized, continuing a steady trend for the past several years. I’ve encouraged using the term “Fentanyl Crisis” rather than “Opioid Crisis” to describe the situation, because it more accurately points to its cause—nonmedical users accessing drugs in the dangerous black market fueled by drug prohibition—hoping thi...
Source: Cato-at-liberty - Category: American Health Authors: Source Type: blogs
Conclusion This hearing was one of several opioid-related hearings and developments that have occurred recently and Congress currently seems to be working in a bipartisan manner to develop thoughtful legislative packages should they opt to take up new opioid-related legislation in advance of the 2018 midterm elections. The Subcommittee is preparing for a third hearing about the opioid crisis in April, which will cover Medicare, Medicaid and payer issues and plans. Committee Chairman Walden has said he wants the Committee to complete consideration of bills to address the opioid crisis by Memorial Day. On the Sen...
Source: Policy and Medicine - Category: American Health Authors: Source Type: blogs
Conclusion Using the three Cs of risk management strategies—collecting information, communicating, and carefully documenting—when prescribing controlled substances supports quality patient care and can decrease the risk of improper prescribing allegations. Appendix 1. Prescribing Controlled Substances: Informed Consent Some, but not all states have promulgated various requirements and recommendations for components of an informed consent discussion when prescribing controlled substances.  The following is a compilation of current individual state requirements and recommendations for informed consent. ...
Source: Innovations in Clinical Neuroscience - Category: Neuroscience Authors: Tags: Current Issue Risk Management Source Type: research
Abstract Opioid misuse, including the use of heroin and the overprescribing, misuse, and diversion of opioid pain medications, has reached epidemic proportions in the United States. As a result, there has been a dramatic increase in opioid use disorder and associated overdoses and deaths. Addiction is a chronic brain disease with a genetic component that affects motivation, inhibition, and cognition. Patient characteristics associated with successful buprenorphine maintenance treatment include stable or controlled medical or psychiatric comorbidities and a safe, substance-free environment. As a partial opioid agon...
Source: American Family Physician - Category: Primary Care Authors: Tags: Am Fam Physician Source Type: research
On December 5, 2017, the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services, Education, and Related Agencies held a hearing to discuss the opioid epidemic and the possible role that Congress could play in the prevention, treatment, and recovery. Senator Roy Blunt, the Subcommittee Chairman, opened the hearing by discussing the fact that overdose related deaths outnumber the deaths at the peak of the AIDS/HIV epidemic. Overdose deaths have also overtaken automobile accident fatalities to become the number one cause of accidental death in the United States. Senator Blunt also spoke about the three propos...
Source: Policy and Medicine - Category: American Health Authors: Source Type: blogs
In the last two decades, prescribing rates for opioids have increased nearly three-fold, from 76 million prescriptions in 1991 to approximately 207 million prescriptions in 2013.  This remarkable volume of opioid prescribing is unique to the United States, where 2015 prescribing amounts were nearly four times those in Europe.   Sadly, this much more frequent prescribing of addictive medications is connected to an epidemic of deaths related to abuse of opiates and other drugs of abuse.  Drug overdose deaths are now considered a national emergency, topping 59,000 in 2016.  The abuse of opioids can be...
Source: Health Affairs Blog - Category: Health Management Authors: Tags: Costs and Spending Insurance and Coverage Organization and Delivery Payment Policy opiods PBMs Source Type: blogs
The White House’s Commission on Combating Drug Addiction and the Opioid Crisis (Opioid Commission) has issued an interim report, which offers recommended actions for President Trump to take now, with more recommendations planned for the fall of 2017. The headline-creator of the report was the recommendation to President Trump that he declare the opioid epidemic a national public health emergency and expedite funds and resources to stop the crisis. The Opioid Commission discussed its outreach to individuals and organizations, including all fifty Governors and bipartisan members of Congress, providers, insurers and me...
Source: Policy and Medicine - Category: American Health Authors: Source Type: blogs
Conclusion and Recommendations More intervention-based clinical trials are needed to provide a strong alternative candidate therapy for management of opiate use disorder. Buprenorphine, although a promising candidate, should be researched more regarding treatment retention and patient satisfaction before any conclusions can be made regarding its standard use for opiate substitution maintenance treatment of pregnant patients with opiate use disorder. Heroin-assisted treatment still cannot be considered in opiate addicts refractory to MMT; more data should be collected regarding efficacy in larger participant populations un...
Source: Innovations in Clinical Neuroscience - Category: Neuroscience Authors: Tags: Current Issue General Review buphernorphin heroin methadone opiate opiate addiction treatment withdrawal Source Type: research
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