Andrew Kolodny Rips National Pain Report For Unfair Reporting

Andrew Kolodny Rips National Pain Report For Unfair Reporting

By Ed Coghlan.

Dr. Andrew Kolodny has criticized the National Pain Report for what he calls “its unfair and false reporting” on him.

He said it is “absolutely false” that he is “aggressively pushing the idea of restricting or eliminating opioid usage” as we indicated this week.

“I have never pushed for a policy that would restrict or eliminate opioids,” he said. “I believe opioids play an important in both the treatment of pain and addiction.”

What he is for, he said, is responsible prescribing.

Kolodny also believes we should avoid referring to the crisis as an epidemic of drug abuse.  As he said on the Brandeis University website: “Calling it an abuse problem suggests the cause is bad behavior—people abusing dangerous drugs to get high. While it’s true that some people got addicted from recreational use, many also became addicted taking opioids exactly as prescribed by doctors. Once addicted, people aren’t using heroin or pills because it’s fun. They need to keep using opioids to avoid feeling awful.”

Kolodny, who in addition to his work at Brandeis University is also executive director of Physicians for Responsible Opioid Prescribing, started working on the issue about 15 years ago for New York City’s health department.

Kolodny has been in the news recently urging the Trump Administration to move faster to address the issue of overprescribing and addiction.

“There really isn’t anything this (federal) commission is going to figure out that we don’t know already,” Dr. Andrew Kolodny, told the New York Times. “What we need is an enormous federal investment in expanding access to addiction treatment, and for the different federal agencies that have a piece of this problem to be working in a coordinated fashion.”

“Policymakers wanted to stop so-called ‘drug abusers’ but were ignoring the problem of overprescribing. It was all focused on preventing kids from getting into grandma’s medicine chest, but no one was looking at why every grandma now had opioids in her medicine chest.”

Kolodny indicated he would think about writing a column talking about opioids and chronic pain for the National Pain Report but said, “Had you approached me before you did this false reporting, I might have been more inclined to do it.”

Authored by: Ed Coghlan

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Dennis Capolongo, your comments are amazing. Is this an article you contributed to? It’s from 2013, but I truly doubt his “clinics” have improved beyond this farce of a model.

Mr. Kolodny, you are a fraud, a liar, and most of all YOU ARE A THIEF. You have literally STOLEN thousands of lives already with your ignorant ranting. Those that have not yet taken their own lives due to patient abandonment are suffering and their deaths will be early due the havoc pain wreaks on the endocrine system.

I invite you to visit the facebook page called American Medical Genocide — you can see the results of your handiwork there, the suicides resulting from YOUR WORDS. You have gallons of blood on your hands, Kolodny; it will still be coating you went you begin your descent into hell for the crimes against humanity you have committed. I really can’t understand why or how Brandeis can keep you on staff with any sort of conscience, given that you are a HUGE part of the current American holocaust. HOW do you live with yourself???


I am in full support of Mr. Lawhern and the Group of Patient Advicates who wrote this incredible piece outing this evil man. The real motivations of Kolodny and his false propoganda and lies that are not only denying legally written medications to patients who are suffering. He is an abject liar that he know all aspects of Pain and the Managemfnt of it. He is not qualified and it appears he is on a mission due to the death of his son, ( if this is the driving motivation for his musguided mission). Still…
We have all suffered losses in our lives, but to go out and spread false information and then to align yourself with the profit making
Business of Drug Rehab Centers like Phoenix House, surely validates his own personal vendetta and drive for personal profit against the WHOLE PAIN MGMT Practice and and the amazing selfless Doctors doing this work every day. The physicians do not do this for glory or profit, they help people in unmanageable chronic pain because of their drive to help those patients that other doctors have failed them. These patients are desperate for help and to cut off these access to safe pain mgmt care in no less than criminal.
Kolodny is a liar and his own personal written words on what drives him to launch an attack on a whole group of patients proves he had no knowledge of what it means to ” DO NO HARM”. All he is doing is HARM and he must be discredited using his own policies and words, and it so easy to validate, as Mr. Lawhern as proven.
When you put yourself before others in an effort to make your policies, however false and provocative as they are, you are not part of the solution,you are the problem!
And Kolodny is a BIG PART OF THE PROBLEM. He is a liar and a fraud and he will be continually be made aware that we are all very much aware NOW thanks to Lawherns piece, of his garbage agenda.
And it doesn’t hurt that he had profited from being involved in Drug Rehab as Insurance Companies as welll as the Govt are pouring millions into this flawed business. And a business it is.
What a disgrace.

Well done Mr. Lawhern and all his supporters. Kolodny has been pushed into the light and he HATES IT. Keep going…


…and the states, such as the case in North Carolina where they base the state guidelines off of ONE unnamed CDC study. Pathetic.

I agree with every word you said, Mr. Lawhern. Thank you for speaking out about this man.

Raz Sey

Mr Kolodny, wants all the profits as he is pushing suboxone and nalaxone ever chance he gets as well as the rehab centers, which he supposedly stepped down from a year ago, but, is still trying to sell HIS choice of opioids, which cost around 600 a month, rehab, 10,000 to 35,000$ a month, and everything and anything that doesnt allow him to make his fortune is an addict, chronic pain patients included. He is the big cheese at a friends foundation whose son died of overdose, so he has to say what pays his bills, whether or not he actually believes it. So, what does he have to gain? Lol! He wants control as even cpps will go to rehab just to get “something’ even if it means saying im an addict and need buprenorpine which is stronger than heroin, and harder to get off of, just to get Some kind of relief. Thats why anyone that uses opioids is an addict according to kolodny. More customers! Get the media and cdc, dea behind ya, and he thinks by doing that, the public opinion will be just what he wanted it to be, addicts! Shame on us all for having the nerve to be in pain.!


Ellie: where did you learn that Kolodny’s son died of an overdose? Do you know the son’s name? I would like to follow-up and include that piece of information in a Kolodny craziness timeline. Thank you!

As illustrated in the comments here, National Pain Report isn’t the one being “ripped”. Andrew Kolodny is — as he richly deserves to be. His positions of public advocacy are based on junk science, professional incompetence and financial self-interest. He claims to be a doctor, but ignores the first and foremost principle of medical practice: “first do no avoidable harm.”

Is any1 aware that the great Andrew kolodny’s son died of a drug overdose?? I wonder did he get it out of AK’s medicine cabinet, & is this some kind of personal vendetta? Uptight sure sounds like he has along with a $ maker but possibly a very deep seeded personal issue that we are all hand selected paying for. Something is really off with this man & this could be it!!


How can this man blame the Chronic Pain Community for coining the term “opiate epidemic” & he “never” used the term. Another lie! I honestly think he might believe ……naw! He knows it was him & his PROP buddy’s so they could erect Phoenix House. Which has made them alot of money $$$$$$. Cha ching. This so called Dr. would have to be deaf, dumb & blind not see the lives lost thru suicde. Because Dr’s cut them off (out of fear of arrest) needed meds & their pain became so great they couldn’t bare it any longer. Or the lives of families torn apart. How this man be a psychiatrist and not see the damage that he and his little buddy started?
Especially with all our Nation has been going thru, everyone is angry with everyone else. You add impossible pain to
that, then hopelessness sets in. More hatered & violence.
Well i went to his practices web site. First of all he asked all the wrong questions. And put it right out there for all to see. I believe he’s nervous. All the lies & falsification of records at the CDC. Then threatening the Scientists they better go along or lose to a lower position.
Out of this escapade SPIDER was formed.
Whew, thats alot of luggage to be carrying around I’m tired just talking about it and that’s like the tip of the iceberg so you have any questions about all this all you have to do is your research stay proactive and let’s keep pushing on it won’t be long now folks


In Oregon they have Death with dignity.

How about a ***chronic pain patient’s right to pain relief with dignity?***

There isn’t much dignity in suicide because of severe pain.


I would like to thank “dp” for listing attached articles that speak truth in this farcical war, not against drugs, but the immense profit/money/greed creating customers for Drug Rehab Clinics. In one of dp’s listed articles is one from the Daily Mail, a U.K. based news service. The article of 9/17/17 reports NYC law enforcement confiscated 270 pounds of Fentanyl & Heroin, enough to kill 32 million addicts. This is a huge story, yet how many US news services informed us of this big story? More importantly why do we need to go to a foreign source to read about this massive drug hail? Several years ago large investment houses like Bain Capital started putting large bets on Methadone Clinics. The Boston-based private equity firm recently took over Habit OPCO Inc., the largest chain of substance treatment facilities in Massachusetts, with 13 locations from Boston to Springfield. Bain paid $58 million to acquire the for-profit centers through CRC Health Corp., a California company it has owned since 2006. CRC Health is the biggest provider of substance abuse treatment and behavioral health services in the country. Habit OPCO charges patients $135 a week for methadone treatment. Unlike many opioid based analgesics, Methadone is a coal based synthetic opioid substitute for derivatives of the Poppy Plant. Once taken tolorence and dependence to this drug can take hold quickly. So it makes total sense in Dr. Kolodny’s argument that we must restrict Pain Patients, to be dropped from Morphine which mimics our body’s nature producing opiates (endorphins), and replace it with a substance even identified on the CDC guidelines (90mg. mme.) as more powerful than MS-cotin or Oxycodine. 90 mgs of Morphine is equivalent to 60mgs of Oxycodine and 30mgs of Methadone. Most importantly it’s almost impossibility to get off of. In one interview, a reporter asked Dr. Kolodny how long did he see a rehab patient should be able to take Methadone? His response was it could be indefinitely. Really, not time limit? “Each case/patient has to be treated individually”. Now that it is almost impossible to find a Doctor willing to take on new pain patients, drug addicts who used to “score” prescription pain pills are going to far more powerful street drugs that cost 1/4th the price. If there exists a percentage of the population that has a predisposition to addiction, is it now better to move them to drugs that are no just unsafe (not regulated by the FDA) , but are so powerful that a single grain of Carfentanil (elephant tranquilizer) will kill the most die-hard addict. Consider this: A 10 milligram dose of the animal tranquilizer carfentanil is powerful enough to sedate, even kill, a 15,000-pound African elephant. Another drug being imported into our country. In a healthcare system that literally cannot support everyone, Baby Boomers now make up 2/3rds of the population. Elder retirees no longer contribute to healthcare by payroll deductions, but suck from the system. Drug addict ne’er-do-wells will die off by attrition, while… Read more »

jeffery a. crawford

i would like to thank you for being a part of the jerks that think some of us that are disable that do need help by living day to day with god awful problem of pain i didn’t want my arm all but cut off i didn’t want my neck almost broken i didn’t want migraines every dang day i didn’t want my knees broken my back broken jeess just take out and shoot me. we are in Russia right ? I am not on a drug one ! I am pretty upset over being in pain and hurting like i do every day . i don’t drink smoke dope buy pills just try to live life .

Michelle Ziemba

The question is Kolodny, what do you want your legacy to be? Which circle of Dante’s Inferno do you hope to end on? If you stop your madness now and start doing the right thing, you can start undoing the damage you’ve caused, but you will STILL have blood and tears and pain on your hands. BUT if you stop now, you can stop an epidemic in our community that you helped perpetuate. Get Opana back on the shelf, get rid of those ridiculous guidelines and let’s start over before more people kill themselves and their children — yes, their babies — because of pain.

We want opioids. But we need more than that. We want insurance for everyone — not the stripped down Obama repeal That the GOO keeps trying to pass. We want our insurance to cover rehab, and other therapies. We want insurance companies to leave our med regimens alone (Did you help CVS with their new suicide policy?) when they work? We want doctors to believe us when we tell them that something is wrong: I had to wait 10 years for a diagnosis of atypical Trigeminal Neuralgia. I knew but no one believed me. There are so many more wants and needs that reasonable and would be more fiscally responsible.

So Dr. Kolodny, you need to decide before it’s too late, are you going to help us or condemn us? You’ve been given an unheard opportunity: To write an unedited column in a national publication in your field. Why not take advantage of that?


Dr. Kolodny,
Maybe you and the government should spend your time, effort and money educating children to stay out of grandma’s medicine chest. Stop making grandma a criminal for having her medicine . Along with the other chronic pain sufferers.
You all are making criminals out of the wrong people. Shame on you.


Policymakers wanted to stop so-called ‘drug abusers’ but were ignoring the problem of overprescribing. It was all focused on preventing kids from getting into grandma’s medicine chest, but no one was looking at why every grandma now had opioids in her medicine chest.”
In regards to the above statement:
What happened to kids getting drugs off the streets illegally. Everyone seems to be forgetting where the real drugs are coming from . Illegal drugs are the biggest culprit. Always have been. Remember the ” Just say no to drugs” campaign ? Grandma is not the big bad wolf and neither are doctors and chronic pain sufferers like the government and media are portraying. But it seems they are the easy targets.
Could this have something to do with most states legalizing marijuana?(Ohio). Seems to me they are making way for it and the money coming to all those standing in line waiting to collect it. Maybe getting rid of big pharma? Close to me there will be several grow facilities ran by the state. Marijuana the once gateway drug to herion and meth etc is tame now compared to pain reliever s? It seems pain medication is being demonized by our government as they(Ohio) are :
1. Suing the pharmaceutical companies.( which does not make sense to me.)
2. Setting up long term rehab centers for so called “opioids crisis that one year ago was labeled ( even in the media) a heroin-epidemic. Think about all the money generated here because they call this an opioid-epidemic now. I sure hope these facilities help illegal drug addicts.
Personally like everything else with our government I believe this whole thing is about money.
The focus has been changed off of the real problem like drug addicted souls we have with needles filled with herion stuck in their arms sitting not too far from here in a Mc Donald’s parking lot and there are thousands of stories like this just in Ohio.. We no longer hear news reports on these incidents or the real problem of illegal street drugs….. Instead it’s the opioids in grandma’s closets. How reckless.


What I’m still NOT hearing from Dr. Kolodny is that he separates the addicts from the Chronic Pain population and ‘wholeheartedly’ understands, cares and empathizes for us and that he will do all in his might to be sure that we are NO LONGER being harmed; and that he well knows that the suicide rate is increasing amongst our community because meds are sadly and ridiculously being taken away from us, that he is apologetic for it all and that he will IMMEDIATELY turn this around on our behalf and put his power into effect to HELP US and no longer HARM US!!
Dr. Kolodny, I, on behalf of us all, plead, beg with you…to turn this around now. We NEED YOUR HELP. Please understand where we are coming from. Please
Please understand. We are suffering greatly. We are dying. We have been through it all. We know what helps us and what doesn’t help us.
Please listen, please talk with us.
Enough is far beyond enough now. This is America, not a 3rd world country. Thank you.

Andrew promotes other groups or individuals that are trying to limit the use of pain medication for Chronic Pain Patients.

He / Andrew – uses the voice of others & not his own. This way he can make the claim he’s made in the article.


John Sandherr


Wonder if he can be sued for the pain and deaths he has caused??

Mark Ibsen MD

“He won’t quote sources or put in links that have any substance.

The closest he gets is “opioid related hospitalizations…” (like patients coming in the ER in more pain being undertreated?..people coming in because of an injury needing pain relief? Patients with urgent onset pain? (like car accident victims) or ODs.) He uses surveys that cannot be documented, data that is mined from cases no longer in the hospital unable to give information such as complete case history.And data that is not backed up by state data.”

This is so true m brown.

Interesting that Dr K can call up the editor of this blog,
Complain bitterly
Threaten the author
Deny deny deny the things he has been quoted repeatedly about
Bully authors
Bully patients
Get away with it
For a while.

No doubt truth will out
It did with McCarthyism
It’s just a matter of time.
I’m just interested in saving some lives by speeding up that time.
Demagoguery seems to work these days.

I too suffer from Intractable pain syndrome re.intractable migraines that after 40 years of suffering and trying to find a medication that helps keep me off the couch/ bed I am now on a opiate that gives me some quality of life ( my doctor’s words) so you want to take us off these medications so we will be at risk of heart attack/stroke because without controlling our pain our blood pressure and pulse go sky high? Clearly you have never suffered pain because if you did you would see the benefit it gives true pain cannot live in horrific pain for a lifetime it’s asking too much esp when you are bed ridden and missing out on family outings far my doctor is continuing to help me because I’ve had to prove to him I am a legitimate person who suffers from a rare Intractable pain syndrome since I was 12 now doctor has seen the benefit opiates has had on my life and is truly happy for me.i take my meds in a responsible manner and have never over dosed or been high the meds are just controlling my pain that’s it that’s all.a diabetic would never be told go off your diabetes medication so why is this any different? I do not think you understand pain patients from addicts because you are putting us in the same category shame on you!

Donna Corley

And there it is… addiction treatments for ALL. Dr. Kolodney is not a PAIN specialist but an addiction specialist which is a BIG difference in the two.
He has yet to address the issue of HOW patients metabolize these medications, due to the fact he has NO clue how to do this based on his constant comments of addiction.
There is a BIG difference between addicted and dependent! Having any incurable PAIN dibilitating disease is beyond anything you can imagine unless you suffer with it yourself like, adhesive Arachnoiditis, Tarlov Cyst Disease and RSD/CRPS in which case I suffer with ALL 3 of these diseases as do many other’s!
By Dr. Kolodny continuing to push his addiction agenda, it has caused doctors to drop patients, lower their medications, and caused many patients to commit suicide because they can no longer live with the pain.
YOU should be ashamed Kolodny. If you truly care about those who are SUFFERING, why are you not addressing these issues concerning how these patients metabolize these medications?
What we NEED is for YOU Dr. Kolodny, to STOP labeling all chronic pain patients as addicts and start researching how patients metabolize these medications and how better to help them manage their pain instead of suggesting they go to rehab!!

Gary Snook

Dear Mr Kolodny,
You have lied about me when you called me an addict. Your falsehoods have made it almost impossible for me to get the care I need from any doctor anywhere in the USA. You know nothing about the incurable spinal cord disease I suffer from nor the pain it produces that is worse than metastized bone cancer but you are trying to convince my doctor all my pain is caused by the medication I take. That I will do better without pain control. Many of my fellow pain brothers and sister are now dead because their doctors are actually listened to what you are saying and forced them into a taper or dropped them completely. Never since Karl Brandt has the world seen a doctor that has inflicted so much pain, suffering, and death on the disabled. How do you think you will be remembered?


This man is either incredibly ignorant or he’s pushing a huge agenda — where is the money trail? NO doctors are over prescribing, they’ve mostly been intimidated into good little automatons with all the trumped up charges and RICO civil asset forfeiture being used on others used as examples like the physicians on the Doctors of Courage site. The TRUTH is the real, very BIG problem is illegal drugs like heroin and illicitly made fentanyl analogues that are killing people!!! Almost every person in the country has taken opioids for something, surgery, dental care, etc. In this man’s very narrow mind, every single person should now be a junkie because of the “big bad” medicine. Anyone with half a brain sees right through this PROPaganda. He is 50 steps behind and everyone can clearly see he’s pushing an agenda at this point that does NOT align with reality. Get with the times, Kolodny. So you’d rather have people with the disease of addiction going to the street than seeing a doctor and obtaining a prescription for what would be far safer opiates – yes, even if they’re abusing them – than the heroin and illicitly made fentanyl analogues that are virtual Russian roulette? And you call yourself an EXPERT?? Please. You can talk until you’re blue in the face about nasty prescriptions but you’re not fooling anyone, the jig is up, people know you’re out of touch and only interested in furthering your MAT and rehab cash cow. The stats speak louder than your words and clearly show that prescription opioid overdoses have NEVER been the scourge you keep trying to insist they were. There have been at least five deaths in my community this week, ALL from illicit drugs and most too young to have ever had any prescription. The hard cold reality is that the street drugs are so prevalent, prolific and INEXPENSIVE that no one is looking for prescriptions. Wake up and focus on reality or you do nothing more than continue to dig yourself into an even bigger hole.

Jane Babin

What we need is to make a substantial investment in research and development to find and validate drugs and other treatments for pain that are safer and more effective, rather than repeat menaningless, misleading, hollow cliches. Arbitrarily restricting Rx opioids is neither safer nor more effective. We also need aggressive treatment of acute pain and more importantly, the underlying causes of acute pain so that it does not progress to chronic pain, and to accept that when that fails and chronic pain associated with a condition that cannot be treated sufficiently (or can no longer be treated because the window of opportunity was missed at the acute stage) is the result, that the patient’s right to have his or her pain treated is at least as deserving as the addict’s right to treatment of opioid use disorder – and we need to invest at least as much on pain as we do on addiction, per capita based on the number of patients affected by each. We need healthcare decisions that are not dictated by insurance companies, health care conglomerates, or government bureaucracies.

Carl S Dunn

After living in this world for 60 years and obtaining a degree or two at college, as well as being an avid reader, I have determined that it is MONEY and the profit motive behind all decisions in government and industry, Some call this capitalism but I call it fascism. Fascism is when government and industry leaders work together to obtain power and assets (wealth). For example, the Attorney General of the United States has a vested interest in seeing users of cannabis serve time in prison because he owns major stock in private prison corporations. Whenever a law is created in Congress, the captains of industry usually have a major influence in writing the bill and give millions to the congressmen and senators to vote for or against it, always for maximum profit. I am sorry to say that the reason there is such a backlash against “over-prescribing opiates” may be due to the purchasing of stock in rehab facilities and companies hoping to sell more suboxone pharmaceuticals! Billions of dollars can be made forcing chronic pain patients to wean using rehab w/sub therapy, and whoever has invested in this type of “business” can make a bundle. Why else do insurance companies get away with cutting patients off their meds? They use the ploy of ignorant mass media hysteria to influence public policy to get away with murder! Screw the facts and reality when money can be made! Isn’t that the, “modus operandi” of American capitalism? Follow the money and we will see the reality and truth, folks! Since when has our government actually passed laws that are “for the people, etc.”? Political power must be created by organizing all those who are affected, families, friends, and local leaders to threaten NOT to vote for any political agent who votes the wrong way. That, my friends, is the ONLY way to control these legislatures. They fear losing their seat of power so much so they will heed your call and letters! On the other side are paid lobbyists who give millions of corporate moneys so your Congressman/woman vote for their corporate masters’ wishes. There are over 5,000 registered lobbyists who influence their votes with payola, and only the fear of losing the next election will ensure the peoples interests are heard by your elected politician.

E. Gold

I used to say that I’d never wish my debilitating 24/7 pain on anyone, not even my worst enemy. But with this “epidemic” still going on and all these unjust & heartbreaking accounts of chronic pain patients being ostracized, denied care and bullied by/kicked out of ERs – I want to take my first sentence back. I wish – even for a short timeframe – that every single anti-opioid advocate [& every organization] that’s making getting pain relief nearly impossible for patients, was required to experience what most of our debilitating, chronic pain feels like. Only then, after each and every one of them has suffered in our shoes, only then would I really like to hear about their stance on opioid pain medication. I’d like them to experience what we’ve been through lately- with so many being dismissed by their doctors, denied pain medication ( & empathy, compassion and care!) – especially at the ER, being called and compared to drug addicts (which is so far off base for chronic pain patients out there) and seriously considering suicide because the pain is not compatible with life. After these people have suffered in our shoes with untreated chronic pain and tried everything and anything possible to get pain relief before turning to opioids as a last resort, but wait—> at that point, after exhausting every possible option, losing all aspects of quality of life and being confined to bed at a family member’s house, I’d like them to be denied pain medication and instead called terrible names, for example: “drug addict” “pill seeker” “frequent flyer” etc…People really should think carefully before they act; before they try to enforce unrealistic and extremely harmful rules on undeserving, innocent people. I wish I could be more proactive about this horrendous issue, but the truth is my pain has not been under control this year due to my dosage being reduced and my BT stopped (per new “recommendations”). Also, it’s really too bad for many of the good MD’s out there who care about their patients but are on too tight a leash by these overseeing, inhumane agencies that they essentially cannot give these patients proper care & pain relief. It is not right and these people should stop to examine their morals. They shoul examine their regard, or complete lack of, for human life because clearly that is not one of their concerns, nor is human life deemed important, as we have seen, read about, & experienced firsthand.


Kolodny and his PROP are nothing more than lobbyist wanting to push forward something that’s usually not good and he is a prime example of that!! Not Good!! He doesn’t even know what he’s talking about. The data he and other’s use is outdated and one-sided. He and his lapdogs only want money for their addiction centers….Disgusting!! “Most” patients who take opioids prescribed by their doctor take them as prescribed and responsibly. I’ve never gotten high from my pain meds, I’ve always taken them as directed without problems, never sold my meds, never given any of them to anyone else. I keep them locked up and I’ve never gotten any pills or anything else from anyone except my doctor. After exhausting every other treatment out there this is the only thing that allows me to be somewhat of a mother, wife, grandmother to my 1st grandchild who is 9 months old, daughter, sister, etc. I still have days when I’m not able to even be the person I want and need to be but it’s better than staying in bed every day screaming in pain. If that is what the rest of my life may come to, I don’t want to be part of it. It destroys not only the patient but the entire family and pushes away any friends they have. This article he responded to is nothing more than another lie. What do you expect from someone who thinks all chronic pain patients are getting high, seeking drugs, Doctor’s are over-prescribing, etc. That is a bunch of Bull and so far from the actually truth. If he ever had chronic pain he would back off and so fast and drop this witch hunt. Politics do not have any business getting in between a Doctor and Patient decision. This has gone too far. Leave Doctor’s and their patients alone and go after those who are using drugs illegally or getting them on the streets. Those are ones dying!!


How does Kolodny (psychiatrist, not a pain management physician), CDC, DEA, HHS, special interests (CVS among others) keep a straight face and continue to justify and/or distance themselves from the entirely failed opioid policy as solicited to CDC by PROP? Care to play connect the dots and draw your own conclusions, anyone?

“The CDC Opioid Guidelines Violate Standards Of Science Research”
“Evidence Against CDC Opioid Guidelines”
“States Impatient for Opioid Declaration” (insert corporate America where it refers to states.)
“CVS to Pay $3.5 Million to Resolve Allegations that Pharmacists Filled Fake Prescriptions”
“42 U.S. Code § 1395 – Prohibition Against Any Federal Interference”
“CVS Pharmacy Minute Clinics Use of Government Agencies to Run Thousands of Doctors Out of Business.”
Grand Jury Requested To Investigate California Governor Jerry Brown
“New York City Officials Seize Enough (illicit) Fentanyl ‘to Kill 32 Million People’ in New Record-Breaking Drug Bust”
“Acting DEA Chief Chuck Rosenberg Plans To Resign”
“HHS Secretary Tom Price Resigns Amid Criticism for Taking Charter Flights at Taxpayer Expense”
“Who Will Not Be Here Tomorrow?”

Kevin you are absolutely correct,those type of treatments are exactly what the ADDICTED ppl need. They are not in pain,thier problem is in thier brain.So detox them and buy them a yoga matt.OR go to Dr.kolodny and he will hook you up with OPIOIDS called Suboxone,and all ya want to he might even front ya some. Now is that unfair too DOC.????

Heather Wolf

Kolonody is an addiction doctor. He eats sleeps and breathes ways to stop addiction from happening. he therefore sees potential addicts in everyone. He has no education in the management of pain. He only took likely 4 credit hours about pain and it was likely in an endocrine class where they talk about endogenous opiods which the body makes as hormones released by the adrenals as well anelgesics like melatonin which has some role in pain relief. He is not educated in how pain is perceived nor how chronic incurable illness might impact a human beings ability to self heal. Because he is not trained in pain medicine he does not appreciate the risks nor the hazards of pulling pain medication from those who need it. He also has no appreciation for how pain can damage a persons brain, lead to stroke, heart attack and unleash cancerous factors into the blood stream. Kolonody is very effective at getting stuff done and yet he is uneducated when it comes to how his policies are impacting human health. He has no business telling pain management doctors how to treat pain any more than he should be telling oncologists how to treat pain or how physicians should treat sickle cell anemia pain. The hundred million pain patients in the US are being discriminated against thanks to his perhaps noble but wreckless machiavellian dream to destroy a vile street drug crisis. Because His business is addiction that is all he knows. The problem is wre dont have an advocate like him in government who is as effective as he is at moving ahead initiatives. the problem is the sources of power are throwig his unstudied inaccurate harmful recommendations into law which directly harm patients struggling with terminal health conditions. he needs to step back and look at his actions and realize the true cost of his initiatives. I assume he would not do so therefore we must petition the taskforce on opiods and all elected officials to caution against his unstudied and disastrous recommendations on how to treat pain in America. If we dont get some educated doctors standing up to these initiatives which serve to destroy the quality of life for the terminally ill and disabled, a new catastrophe will unfold and the data will point to his policies.


Because of professional propaganda pushers like Kolodny who make a living off of pushing provably false lies and data, because of him and his ilk I’m one of the many pain patients who are now completely disabled out of work and home bound due to my now undertreated pain. So thanks Dr Kolodny for ruining my life, a pain patient for 24yrs with no addiction no overdose, I’m now fully disabled and out of work living in absolute hell because of people like you who’ve made sure pain patients live with doses so low that suicidal thoughts become a regular thing.

Person with Intractable Pain Due to Medical Error

Dr. Kolodney-

Although you are not qualified to speak about chronic pain, I wonder if you are aware of the Cochrane analysis that demonstrated a 1% opioid addiction rate among chronic pain patients and a more recent study demonstrating the risk of addiction at 8-10% ? Quite obviously the problem IS bad behavior and therefore should continue to be referred to as an issue of “drug abuse” because that is what it clearly is.

Your questioning why grandma has opioids in her medicine cabinet demonstrates your complete dismissal of the idea that the other 90-99% of opioid users have chronic pain. Prudent use of resources?

“I have never pushed for a policy that would restrict or eliminate opioids” is manipulation using semantics. While you say you have never “pushed for a POLICY”, you have most certainly aggressively pushed for a GUIDELINE, The CDC GUIDELINE FOR PRESCRIBING OPIOIDS FOR CHRONIC PAIN, which definitely calls for the restriction of opioids. Don’t insult our intelligence with your statements.

Do you understand the difference between dependence and addiction? Your statement, “…once addicted”, ( a whopping 1-10%) “people aren’t using heroin or pills because it’s fun. They need to keep using opioids to avoid feeling awful.” demonstrates that you do not.

Please share with us the relapse rates of programs such as yours. Convince millions of us that you are in this for altruistic reasons. You would push for ” an enormous amount of federal investment” for programs with such abysmal actual success rates?

Your statement that you will “think about writing a column talking about opioids and chronic pain,” but had we approached you “before we did this false reporting” you “might have been more inclined to do it” comes off like a spoiled, defiant child caught in a lie. Please don’t waste your time as you are not qualified to write on the subject. Perhaps your time would be better spent in developing addiction treatments that DO work. For this you are eminently qualified.

Person with Intractable Pain Due to Medical Error

Sally Balsamo

For Dr. Kolodny to say he hasn’t pushed an agenda that eliminates or restricts prescribing of opioids is just patently untrue. As a member of PROP, he greatly influenced the CDC guidelines that have thrown many chronic pain patients into a living hell. Pain management doctors are leaving the practice. Other doctors are cutting patients off who have lived productive lives due to opioids. These are nurses and teachers and truck drivers. Now they are becoming disabled, going through cold turkey withdrawal and seeing a resurgence of their pain. The CDC has applied limits to something they can’t even adequately track, nor do they provide a full accounting of all the reasons someone taking opioids may have died. Interesting that the FDA kicked PROP to the curb for having invalid data to support their assertions. Even more interesting are the ties members of the CDC committee have to the addiction recovery industry. These guidelines need to be revoked and rewritten with REAL pain management doctors and pain patients input.

Kathy C

This gets even more Interesting. Somebody hit a nerve! The most immediate contradiction, is the climbing Death Rate. I view this as more Neo Liberal profitability calculations. Pain was unprofitable for the Medical and Insurance Industries, so they could not have that. At the same time, Pharma on the heels of getting busted for Overselling, and Up-selling Opiates, had to find a way to profit from response. They sold this so called “Epidemic” just like they do Fruity Pebbles and Pizza Hut! Unfortunately People are still dying, and that won’t improve with more ridiculousness from Kolodny!

Diane Succio

I have been on the same dosage of pain meds for 3 years. At no time have I gotten high. There also has been a time or 2 that I ran short and never thought about running to the corner to score a bag of Heroin. Am I depended on them? Sure I am, I enjoy the little bit of relief that I get. I enjoy being able to at least get out of bed on a daily basis.
I’ve never wished my pain on anybody, but I do wish he had to experience pain for a day. He would be crying Uncle so fast. Stay out of my relationship with my Doctor. You do not belong in it. It’s between my Dr and myself.


Kolodney is a specialist in addiction medicine not in chronic pain. His influence on the care of chronic pain patients is wrong on so many levels! It’s like saying that a podiatrist has the knowledge and skill set to do brain surgery! The quality of life, such as it was for pain patients has been destroyed by his spreading of complete lies! In ten years of taking a stable dose of medication I never once got high, all I got was moderate pain control that allowed me to function at some level of ” normalcy!


Everyone involved with Chronic pain, read and participated on the National Pain Report, read newspapers and watched the plethora of propaganda spewed by PROP knows full well his true intentions regarding opioid pain medication.

When I think about just the stories of individuals who have lost all hope and taken the path of suicide, many of which have been reported here on NPR, it’s incredibly insulting.

For the intentional pain and suffering he has causes thousands of innocent citizens of our Great Country, he should be brought to The Hague and charged with crimes against humanity.

Mark Ibsen MD

Liars lie about their lying lies.

Let’s face it, Dr. Kolodny’s narrow minded vision on how to effectively manage opiate abuse in the USA has gone main stream. Politicians who share in his obtuse naïveté have flocked to join him on his publicity seeking quest to rid the country of opiate treatments regardless of the patient’s circumstances. When I met him back in 2013 during the PROP hearings at the FDA, it was clear to me that he and his entourage had very little sympathy for chronic pain patients. In fact none of them knew of the pathology nor of the hellish symptoms that Arachnoiditis and/or Leptomenigitis patients must endure and yet they were willing to ignore these patient’s needs so that they could promote their one sided propaganda vision.

Sure there’s an opiate epidemic, but don’t blame those who have suffered as a result of a natural disease, a catastrophic accident or medical mistake! Yes there’s plenty of blame to go around, but don’t add insult to injury to solve a drug abusive issue. Even so, I politely praised PROP’s work as long as they understood that there were two distinct groups who have a stake in this argument, thrill-seeking drug abusers and clinically diagnosed chronic pain sufferers. Still, they refused to consider that many who chronically suffer are living relatively productive lives only because of their well managed opiate intake treatments. They’re not addicts, they’re responsible users with caring sympathetic doctors.

In the end it didn’t seem to matter. PROP intentionally grouped any person who consumes opiates as “addicts” who must have their intake reduced at any cost. Translation, suicides are up thanks to the simpleton philosophy of his which fell flat then as it does today even though it has gained political traction. Taking away an abusers fix will not hold down the number of deaths associated with drug abuse. How do I know this? Unknown to Dr. Kolodny, I lived directly next door to a Phoenix House in Brooklyn NY where I not only visited and would occasionally volunteer, I was assigned by BlackStar/TIME to do a story and photo spread on this relatively new centerpiece for addiction control at the time. Over the course of that assignment I learned from the users themselves that abusive self-destructive complex behavior came in all colors and flavors, and that by simply removing the accelerant will rarely, if ever, prevent the inevitable. It’s more complicated than that. So why punish everyone? Simple, right?

After my PROP Hearing presentation, I was approached by the deputy director of FDA/CDER, Dr. Douglas Throckmorton who said he “fully understood” and pledged to do his “very best to limit PROP’s impact to the chronic pain community.” Has he failed? I’ll let you be the judge of that.


Dana, I am hoping his karma comes quickly. Someone said that they hope that “he never suffers from severe intractable pain”. I sort of hope he does! Then, maybe he will become a little wiser! The denial, above, is a joke! He says nothing about the fact that the opiod crisis the government is addressing is clandestinely produced heroin and fentanyl use. that is what results in overdose! The joke continues to come from doctors who believe old wive;s tales and do no research to actually become better educated on the subject. They get their info from propaganda delivered by the ignorant,

Scott michaels

” chronic pain patients should up” This just one of the many quotes against pain patients. The truth is that he wants the beds in his rehab clinics filled. That’s why he oks90 mgmme. A TRUE ADDICTION DOCTOR WOULD NOT ALLOW ANY OPIOIDS. OPIOIDS IN HIGH DOSES WORK WHEN TAKEN AS DIRECTRD. THERE IS TONS OF PROOF. WHEN YOU TAKE THE MEDICINE AWAY AS HE IMPOSES IT CAUSES GREAT DISPAIR AND EVEN ADDICION.

m brown

He won’t quote sources or put in links that have any substance.

The closest he gets is “opioid related hospitalizations…” (like patients coming in the ER in more pain being undertreated?..people coming in because of an injury needing pain relief? Patients with urgent onset pain? (like car accident victims) or ODs.) He uses surveys that cannot be documented, data that is mined from cases no longer in the hospital unable to give information such as complete case history.And data that is not backed up by state data.

He avoids data and surveys that can be crosschecked for accuracy.

Mikst Granny

Liar! Liar! Pants On Fire! What A Big Ol Pinocchio!
Kolodny Has Caused The Persecution Of Good Doctors & Exacerbated The Suffering Of Countless Chronic Pain Patients! Who Made This Man The Foremost Expert On Prescribing Opioids And Where’s His Phd In Pharmacology? How Does He Think He Can Diagnose The “Appropriate” Dose For Patients Who Are NOT His & Who He Has Never Even Met Nor Knows ANYTHING About? Incredible!


I wish that even a fraction of the money put towards a coordinated effort to help the addicted was put towards the complete coordinated multidisciplinary care of the chronic pain patient. I’m in Canada and we are stupidly following the lead of the USA thus we pain patients in Canada are suffering the same plight. Currently my physician is decimating my care plan by reducing and stopping my medication regardless of how I feel. Instead of having the little bit of quality of life I had on opiates I am on a forced taper and the consequences are shitty at best and catastrophic at worst. Thank you to all the doctors out there who are not listening out there and cowardly protect themselves, because of your inaction I am now spending more time in bed or couch. This man Kolodny has signed the death certificates for many pain patients and could soon be mine. As I lay on my couch in horrible pain my blood pressure is156/110 a direct result of uncontrolled pain. My doctor agrees that it is most likely from my pain yet continues to decrease my meds because of the ‘guidelines’ being viewed as law. So I’m a ticking timebomb being undertreated for pain and most likely will result in a stroke or heart attack since my blood pressure and tachycardia issues aren’t being treated either. In addition, now that my medications are delisted I spend $15,000/year on medication instead of $1500. This delisting of medications/opiates is supposed to prevent abuse is punitive to pain patients. Now I can afford less of the alternative treatments that help me and I cannot even consider trying anything new. Having been a nurse for 30 years I am baffled at the blindness my colleagues are demonstrating and by doing even nothing they are causing harm. If I had behaved like this in the 80’s and 90’s many AIDS patients would not have had me as their nurse. What happened to ‘do no harm’ ? We pain patients are especially vunerable as many days it’s a challenge just to get out of bed. We face daily battles to try and hang onto some semblance of a life. If I answer honestly, I am not living, I am exsisting. I’m sure I will be applying for legal euthanasia in the near future. Thank-you again to Andrew Kolodny and to all the doctors out there that are busy protecting themselves and abandoning thousands of patients like me. Thanks a lot for NOTHING! This situation is so convoluted and wrong that I don’t even know how to advocate for myself and I did it for a living for 30 years. Please will someone anyone help us that truely can? I am already prepared for the silence. 🙁

Roberta Glick

I am consistently both amazed and dismayed at the language used by Kolodny and others to separate and distinguish their comments and points of view re opioids, prescribed for pain, referred to as “ drugs”, from any discussion of other types of prescriptions, referred to as “ medicines”. This then leads to Kolodny etal falsely distinguishing “ dependence” from “addiction” , as evidenced in his statement above. My sister-in-Law has Type 2 Diabetes and takes insulin routinely in order to live a quality life. She will always have to take it. She is dependent on it. BUT, I take an opioid to relieve chronic, excruciating, unrelenting pain resulting from several diagnoses including 16+ spinal fusions. I have never experienced a “high”. But after years and years of trying different meds and other treatment modalities that either didn’t work or caused intolerable side effects, my physician found one that does. But, Dr, Kolodny etal don’t give that any credence. I ask you, Dr. Kolodny, why is my taking opioids (with no side effects, at a stable dose for 3 years now) to “keep from feeling awful” an addiction while diabetics who must take insulin are “ dependent”. Could bias be in the way?

Andrew Kolondy is one of the biggest liars I have had the displeasure of reading about. He says one thing and does the opposite, a prime example of just how low the standards have become to be a member of the medical profession. The doctors at the pain clinics didn’t slash their patients meds for no reason. They did it due to threats of loss of licence and prison from Kolodny and his lap dogs. May he reap what he sows!


“What we need is an enormous federal investment in expanding access to addiction treatment, and for the different federal agencies that have a piece of this problem to be working in a coordinated fashion.”

What we NEED is for the government to leave the health of patients to the patient and their doctor(s).


This man is out of touch with his own reality, And a foreigner to the very anti opioid medications, anti responsible physician opioid treatment prescribing, and furthermore if chronic pain patients do not really feel pain or need adequate opioid analgesic pain medication then the same medical shoe fits on the addiction side of the issue, addicts are not really addicted, and they wouldn’t be as addicted if they did not take addiction medication, what the addicts need is more exercise, yoga, cognitive behavior therapy, Mindfulness behavior training, acupuncture and hypnosis and wellness meditation.

Kathleen Mansfield

Kolodny is drinking too much propaganda..He never- ever mentions that the among many facts about non abuse within the legitimized And monitored..the FDA has also concluded that overdoses are 99.9% by DIRTY BACK ALLEY MIXES OF HEROIN AND TOXIC ADDITIVES LIKE FENTANYL.
******Get on that Kolodny.*******
Stop following the worst propaganda since the Holocaust..that this time the opium propaganda is 🔼🔼🔼🔼🔼▶▶▶▶▶▶🔼🔼🔼🔼🔼🔼🔼
causing those innocent and chronically ill, vets and all injured in vehicles, war and operating disasters (common now) suffer even as they must use a GUN with NO opiates..because THAT IS HOW PARANOID THE DOCS HAVE BECOME..AND EVEN SO- CALLED “LEADERS” SUBCRIBE TO

WAKE UP KOLODNY..CALL IT A MISTAKEN WAR ON OPOIDS AND OUR WEAKEST AND BROKEN AND OFTEN OUR BEST AMERICANS .along with hundreds of millions of other great – able to cope without pain..citizens..