The nexus of opioids, pain, and addiction: Challenges and solutions

Publication date: Available online 18 October 2019Source: Preventive MedicineAuthor(s): Jack E. Henningfield, Judy B. Ashworth, Karen K. Gerlach, Bernie Simone, Sidney H. SchnollAbstractPain and addiction are complex disorders with many commonalities. Beneficial outcomes for both disorders can be achieved through similar principles such as individualized medication selection and dosing, comprehensive multi-modal therapies, and judicious modification of treatment as indicated by the patient's status. This is implicit in the term “medication assisted treatment” (MAT) for opioid use disorders (OUD), and is equally important in pain management; however, for many OUD and pain patients, medication is central to the treatment plan and should neither be denied nor withdrawn if critical to patient well-being. Most patients prescribed opioids for pain do not develop OUD, and most people with OUD do not develop it as a result of appropriately prescribed opioids. Nonetheless, concerns about undertreatment of pain in the late 20th century likely contributed to inappropriate prescribing of opioids. This, coupled with a shortfall in OUD treatment capacity and the unfettered flood of inexpensive heroin and fentanyl, behavioral economics and other factors facilitated the 21st century opioid epidemic. Presently, injudicious reductions in opioid prescriptions for pain are contributing to increased suffering and suicides by pain patients as well as worsening disparities in pain manag...
Source: Preventive Medicine - Category: International Medicine & Public Health Source Type: research

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Source: blog.bioethics.net - Category: Medical Ethics Authors: Tags: Health Care syndicated Source Type: blogs
Zach (left) and Bob (right) According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, more than 70,000 Americans died from drug overdoses in 2017, including illicit drugs and prescription opioids, a two-fold increase in a decade. Opioids include prescription opioids and methadone, heroin, and other synthetic narcotics like fentanyl. Bob Paff has directly suffered the casualties of this epidemic. On January 21 of this year he lost his son Zach to an accidental overdose of fentanyl. A highly sought-after communications expert, business leader, and internationally recognized author, Bob now uses his communications platform to bring ...
Source: World of Psychology - Category: Psychiatry & Psychology Authors: Tags: Addiction General Recovery Stigma Opioid Epidemic Opioids Suicide synthetic fentanyl 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
In early April 2018, Dr. Maria Oquendo, President of the American Psychiatric Association, and Dr. Nora Volkow, Director of the National Institute on Drug Abuse, published a thought-provoking article in the New England Journal of Medicine about the role of suicide in the opioid overdose epidemic, referring to the relationship between them as a “hidden tragedy.” Drs. Oquendo and Volkow drew our attention to the twinning of the opioid (and other drug) overdose and suicide epidemics, but these are not the first or only drug-related “twin epidemics.” Numerous other related conditions, including pain dis...
Source: Journal of Addictions Nursing - Category: Addiction Tags: Departments: Policy Watch Source Type: research
The crushing toll of the opioid crisis is daily news, including stories about ways to “fix” it. A wide array of initiatives has been brought forward in an attempt to curb this epidemic and the damage it causes. Prescription monitoring programs (PMPs) are one of them. The goal of PMPs is a good one — to identify patients who are being prescribed multiple medications by multiple clinicians. It is a means to introduce some stewardship for preventing overuse and misuse of prescription drugs. How prescription monitoring programs work Prescription monitoring programs are state-based electronic databases that pr...
Source: Harvard Health Blog - Category: Consumer Health News Authors: Tags: Addiction Drugs and Supplements Health Source Type: blogs
This past week, Governor John Kasich of Ohio issued an executive order limiting the amount of opioids doctors and dentists can prescribe to no more than a 7 day supply. Failure to comply could result in disciplinary action, including loss of license. Exceptions exist only for patients with cancer or those enrolled in hospice programs. For all the rest, it represents a hard full stop. No longer will the chronic pain sufferer, the woman status post lumbar back fusion x 3, be able to get a prescription for a month's supply of oxycodone with 3 refills.On the surface this appears to be a reasonable initiativ...
Source: Buckeye Surgeon - Category: Surgery Authors: Source Type: blogs
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Source: Healthy Living - The Huffington Post - Category: Consumer Health News Source Type: news
Public health officials are calling the opioid crisis the worst drug epidemic in American history. Overdoses claimed more than 33,000 lives in 2015, and these numbers are steadily on the rise. It’s estimated that over 2 million people in the U.S. are addicted to prescription opioid pain relievers, with many more using the drugs illegally. Potential solutions to the rapidly escalating opioid crisis have been few and far between. But a long-demonized class of illegal drugs may provide one unlikely approach to tackling widespread opiate abuse and addiction. A new study, published last week in the Journal of Psychopha...
Source: Healthy Living - The Huffington Post - Category: Consumer Health News Source Type: news
This article was originally posted on www.drugabuse.gov. -- This feed and its contents are the property of The Huffington Post, and use is subject to our terms. It may be used for personal consumption, but may not be distributed on a website.
Source: Science - The Huffington Post - Category: Science Source Type: news
While black Americans still face worse health outcomes and suffer earlier mortality than white Americans, a new report from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services states that the life expectancy gap between blacks and whites is narrowing.  “Blacks are catching up,” Samuel Preston, a demographer at the University of Pennsylvania, told The New York Times. “The gap is now the narrowest it has been since the beginning of the 20th century, and that’s really good news.” As it stands, black Americans can expect to live until age 76, while white Americans are likely to live until age 79...
Source: Science - The Huffington Post - Category: Science Source Type: news
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