Archives for November, 2011

Addiction

More About Opioid Pain Treatment

Just a quick note-- A group of researchers from Boston University School of Medicine weigh in on the issue of opioid prescribing in an online editorial available through this link.  The editorial appears in the Journal of General Internal Medicine, and I do not know how long the link will be active.  All such articles are copyright-protected, keeping me from posting them here-- but the link operational for non-subscribers, at least...
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Addiction

Opioids for Chronic Pain (?)

I've written about the spectrum of medical and scientific opinion (not, unfortunately, always the same thing) over the use of opioids for treatment of chronic pain.  For those who missed the earlier discussion-- one that produced a heated response from readers-- I invite you to review those posts.

The essence of the issue is that over many years, there has been significant effort to increase patient access to potent opioids.  This effort has come in part from the pharmaceutical industry, but also from organizations that advocate for patients with a wide range of painful conditions, some with connections to pharma, and some without connections to pharma.

There has even been a push to increase opioid prescribing from Federal agencies.  Back in the 1990's, when I chaired my local hospital's Department of Anesthesia, we were warned by agencies hired by the hospital that the Joint Commision on Accreditation was focusing on pain control one particular year, and that some hospitals had been cited for insufficient prescribing of pain medications.
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