Another Report Excludes Pain Sufferers

Another Report Excludes Pain Sufferers

Bloomberg Drug AddictionA group of professionals led by researchers at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health have now chimed in on the topic of “stemming the prescription opioid epidemic,” in what they call a “crisis that kills an average of 44 people a day in the US.”

Their report titled “The Prescription Opioid Epidemic: An Evidence-Based Approach,” was created by professionals from “medicine, pharmacy, injury prevention and law” adding almost parenthetically in their press release that “patient representatives, insurers and drug manufacturers also participated in developing recommendations.”

The report calls for “changes to the way medical students and physicians are trained, prescriptions are dispensed and monitored, first responders are equipped to treat overdoses, and those with addiction are identified and treated.”

But, the actual focus is on the following – none of which is helpful for pain sufferers who use opioids legally and responsibly:

  • Mandatory use of patient surveys to track pain, mood, and body functionality
  • Urine drug testing
  • Collection of prescription data to identify patients who may need substance abuse treatment
  • Granting medical license boards with greater power to investigate prescribers and dispensers

The bottom line is that the report recommends having state and federal governments overhaul their rules for prescribing opioids, stating pain medicines are prescribed “in quantities and for conditions that are excessive, and in many cases, beyond the evidence base.”

“Not only are the recommendations comprehensive, they were developed with input from a wide range of stakeholders, and wherever possible draw from evidence-based research,” said Andrea Gielen, ScD, ScM director of the Johns Hopkins Center for Injury Research and Policy at the Bloomberg School and one of the report’s signatories.

But one doctor has an issue with the suggestion that there even is an “evidence base” for chronic pain.

According to Dr. David Nagel, who wrote this in a recent article for National Pain Report, “There is no universal understanding of chronic pain. There is no universal solution to the problem; in fact, there is no solution. There is no universal definition of what chronic pain management actually is. A physician is judged how well his judgment follows the evidence base.  What happens if there is no reliable evidence base?  What happens if a problem is so complex that that it defies study? Who defines what the reliable evidence base actually is?”

The report comes from the Bloomberg School of Public of Public Health, which seemingly has placed its entire emphasis on addiction and overdose with opioids.  It will gain significant media coverage today (Tuesday, November 11) when it is discussed at the Clinton Health Matters Initiative with participants that include, the Director of White House Office of National Drug Control Policy, Michael Botticelli, as well as the Director of Science Policy for the Department of Health and Human Services, Christopher Jones.  (NOTE:  The first hour of this event will be live-streamed from 3 p.m. to 4 p.m. EST at www.jhsph.edu/rxtownhall)

The chronic pain sufferer’s plea for access to rightful and lawful use of prescription pain medicines is again left on the sideline. Even worse, they are utterly discounted.

The school’s press release addresses the pain sufferer’s use of opioids this way:

“Carefully used, opioids provide important pain relief for many patients with acute or post-surgical pain. Up until the late 1990s, prescription opioids were prescribed primarily to cancer patients. They became more widely used as new products were developed and aggressively promoted for wider use.”

Not much said about the 100 million Americans who suffer in chronic pain – many of whom rely on opioid medications to barely get through the day.

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Authored by: Staff

There are 47 comments for this article
  1. Cynthia at 9:41 pm

    Doc A….I so appreciate your posts. An issue this serious, where the Federal Govt and other powerful entities are involved, has a huge need for professional involvement,,,,doctors and lawyers. We patients surely can’t take this on without your help. Thank you very much.

  2. Doc Anonymous at 4:51 pm

    And here is another (2007) Supreme Court Decision affirming that withholding of medical treatment that results in harm (or pain) is a violation of the 8th Amendment ban on cruel and unusual punishment: https://casetext.com/case/erickson-v-pardus-4

    I submit that the 8th Amendment applies to ALL Americans and not just prisoners. So if it is an 8th Amendment violation to deny treatment for hepatitis C to a prisoner on the basis of an act that he MIGHT have performed, why is it not also an 8th Amendment violation to deny treatment to a pain patient on the basis of acts that he/she might have performed but most likely did not.

  3. John S at 4:09 pm

    I don’t believe that Doc A put pain patients in the same class as inmates nor did he say that not getting proper treatment is a violation of the 8th Amendment. He only inferred that it felt like cruel & unusual treatment since the government controls the classification of opiate medication.

    Who knows, maybe it’s a civil rights violation.

    jjs

  4. Doc Anonymous at 1:39 pm

    BL, in general you are correct that the 8th Amendment historically has dealt with penalties for crimes. However, that changed in 1962 when the Supreme Court decided the case of Robinson v. California. Robinson was sentenced to jail for reasons that essentially boiled down to his being addicted to narcotics. In that case Supreme Court said that addiction was a disease and that imposing a jail sentence for having a disease absent other criminal behavior was in fact “Cruel and Unusual Punishment” under the 8th Amendment.

    From my perspective as a physician dealing with DEA actions, it seems to me that the DEA is treating pain that requires opioids on a chronic basis as a crime. I assure you that the Department of Justice considers anyone who is physically dependent as an addict. And it seems to me that chronic pain patients who use opioids chronically are presumed as a class to be guilty of the crime of diverting drugs to all those who are overdosing. People who are diagnosed or self-professed with “addiction” are given certain legal protections in large part because of Robinson v. California. The chronic pain patient is not afforded the same protections, and the DEA tactics make doctors justifiably fearful of being forced out of practice if they prescribe “too many” opioids. As a consequence of the DEA pressure on
    doctors most are cutting back significantly on opioids. The goal is now to “Minimize” pain medications instead of to “Optimize” pain medication. That generally means that more and more chronic pain patients are being forced to live with more and more torturous pain.

    https://casetext.com/case/robinson-v-california-7

  5. BL at 11:49 am

    Doc Anonymous, the 8th Amendment was designed to be used with criminal defendants. Interesting that you think that chronic pain patients are now in the same class as criminal defendants. Please read the Complete History of the Bill Of Rights and The United States Constitution.

  6. Doc Anonymous at 4:01 am

    Constitutional Rights of Chronic Pain Patients. They should exist but in today’s climate they are frequently violated. Here is one specific example of these violations. The 8th Ammendment guarantees the right to be free of cruel and unusual punishment. Those who suffer chronic pain would most certainly agree that chronic pain is itself a form of torture inflicted by a disease. But the infliction of enhanced pain by others, as happens with wanton and baseless reduction in medication dose, is an act that imposes an additional level of torturous pain.

    Most of the court cases that I have seen seem to revolve around prisoners suing police and/or corrections officers. But there are some generally applicable legal pronouncements as well. I will post abbreviated references here.

    1. “After noting that “unnecessary and wanton inflictions of pain are those that are totally without penological justification,” the Supreme Court concluded that, on the facts alleged by Hope, “the Eighth Amendment violation is obvious.”” Young v Martin et al; Case determined October 2014.

    2. Frome the same court document: “After reciting the facts, the Supreme Court reaffirmed
    that “unnecessary and wanton infliction[s] of pain . . . constitute[ ] cruel and unusual punishment,” including those that are “totally without penological justification.” Hope, 536
    U.S. at 737 (quoting Whitley, 475 U.S. at 319 and Rhodes v. Chapman, 452 U.S. 337, 346 (1981)) (internal quotation marks omitted).”

    The wanton imposition of excessive pain, and its inherent added restrictions in mobility, seem clearly to violate the Supreme Court’s concept of 8th Amendment rights.

    There are more passages in the 3024 decison that could be used, but the quotations above would be a good starting point to communicate to your federal congressional members. Fighting overdose deaths is good, but not at the expense of violating a separate groups 8th Amendment Rights.

  7. Doc Anonymous at 8:39 am

    On the subject of omitted chronic pain patients, here is another example. It is a bill that has been submitted in New York State. And on first glance it does promote some more rational management of chronic pain. It does in fact codify chronic pain as a condition that needs treatment for the benefit of the paitient and the patient’s family. But then it asserts that the goal is to “minimize” the quantity of prescription pain medication, rather than promoting the OPTIMAL dose of pain medication for the patient: Optimal meaning the dose that promotes the most functional improvement with the least, ideally no, side effects.

    Standards are to be set by a council that is composed of people from many groups, primarily academic groups and academic societies…..BUT NO MENTION OF INCLUDING ANY PAIN PATIENTS OR ANY GROUP THAT REPRESENTS PAIN PATIENTS. It is not law yet and is only starting the committee process. In New York, referring a bill to committee is almost always a way to kill a bill before it ever gets going. It is the triumvirate of the governor and the heads of the state senate and house who decide which bills are going to get out of committee.

    But you can read for yourself, here is a link to the bill as introduced into the New York State Assembly: http://assembly.state.ny.us/leg/?default_fld=&bn=SB1939&term=2015&Text=Y.

  8. Doc Anonymous at 1:50 am

    Good information, John S. It is not good news for pain patients. From my experience the DEA agents do not care one bit about chronic pain patients. The FBI, aided by the DEA, has already done this in my hometown in upstate NY. The treatment of chronic pain patients in the early 2000s was funneled into a handful of docs who were willing to prescribe opioids for chronic pain. These practices by their very nature wrote the large majority of pain medications and thus stuck out like sore thumbs on the list of those prescribers who were prescribing more opioids than their colleagues…..Did not matter that their practices were full of people with chronic pain behaving appropriately. They basically shut down every doc that was treating chronic pain patients. Now the patients either go without meds…or even without medical care….or drive 60 miles one way to see doctors who are still willing to prescribe meds. The Medicare data on opioid prescrptions is now available, and in my home town there are NO doctors prescribing chronic opioids. The so called pain management docs do not prescribe at all, or if they do they prescribe only one type of pill. Compare that to pain management programs in other states where the docs prescribe a whole variety of “unique” types of meds. In about 2008 to 2009 the FBI led a number of raids on doctors offices in the area, seizing all files and holding them for up to 2 years. The DEA cooperated. It may be that the lead in this type of action has been transferred to the DEA and that is the real meaning of this “Operation 360.” The steps they are proposing are the same ones used in my hometown under the lead of the FBI.

    One other note, if my memory serves me correct,the US Attorney in Buffalo (a city with some increase in Heroin-Fentayl deaths) stated that the fentanyl that is being combined with heroin comes from illicit production and it is not obtained from “presction” sources. Of course the news media will ignore that kind of fact.

    Please keep us informed of what is happening. But Good Luck to you and the other chronic pain patients in your area. You will need it.

  9. John S at 9:46 pm

    Another LINK for the DEA’s new pilot program to start in Pittsburgh and of course – prescription meds is near the top of the DEA most wanted list.

    http://www.wpxi.com/videos/news/dea-selects-pittsburgh-as-1st-pilot-city-for/vDdxqj/

    Pittsburgh has been hit hard by the HERION OD’s laced mostly with Fentanyl. Like other big cities, HEROIN has made its way to the upper middle class neighborhood’s – as the price comes down and the potency goes up. Its everywhere.

    Thanks,

    John S

  10. John S at 9:30 pm

    They ( DEA ) wont be able to BS what their real goal is as far as OPIATES & Pain Medication
    seems they are coming to my hometown to launch their new program in Pittsburgh. I live just 20 miles from the city.

    http://m.wpxi.com/news/news/local/dea-chooses-pittsburgh-first-pilot-city-strategy-a/npKYj/

    Paste or click the link I have inserted.

    My goal is to make every effort to contact the Mayors office and the DEA and try to set up an interview with anyone that will answer some questions. If I’m writing a book about all this I can’t think of a better opportunity to get some face time with the DEA. My heart is beating faster and faster over the excitement and a chance to ask ; what about the 100 million Chronic Pain Patients and the millions that depend on Opiates to live ?

    Don’t worry, I’ll keep everyone informed and pass along any information I can get if I can get it. Fortunately I have a few friends in City & County government that will be happy to help me. As far as the DEA, I’m sure they already know who I am and the dose I take every day for the last 10 years. I’m not afraid of them but I am afraid of what they can do.

    I wonder if the DEA will go on record and answer some tough questions about their ” war on pain drugs “.

    Thanks,

    John S

  11. Deb at 8:35 pm

    some states have been collecting this info for a few years now……….i.e. Kentucky. I know ohio is already collecting the info too. for some reason the government doesn’t think they have to abide by the HIPPA laws. i don’t know if it passed or not but KY was trying to pass a law where if you were on narcotics it would be reported to local police. we have no rights and these are things we can’t opt out of either. if we chose to opt out of them then we don’t get the meds we need. kinda like if you don’t submit to injections you can’t have the pain meds. it doesn’t make any difference that the injections don’t help and actually do harm.

  12. Loralie at 7:31 pm

    Hi BL, Sorry about the duplicate post’s. When I wrote it earlier my tablet gave me a message stating it didn’t go through. I just tried sending it again and it went through. However, that’s when I noticed it apparently did go through earlier and also saw your comment.

    I do read the consent forms when at the Dr. or Hospital and I’m very well aware my insurance company is allowed to speak with my Dr. regarding medications, testing requests etc. I also believe you’re correct about there being a vague or indirect language within these form’s.

    However, I believe we see this situation very differently and I mean this with all do respect. But, I’m honestly not understand your point 😕? Because, I believe there’s a HUGE difference between My Dr. having to justify the need for a test or expensive medication with my insurance company. Vs. Some Gov group of strangers with BS statistics, the CDC & FDA with hidden agendas and some bogus unprovable studies and unconfirmed statistics.

    Therefore, I don’t believe it’s constitutional for this “coalition” to be allowed access to my personal information. With no court order and dictating how my health condition should be handled. And, potentially get to decide whether or not I’m entitled to receive pain medication and/or what type of medication it should be!

    Respectfully,
    Loralie 👣

  13. Loralie at 6:36 pm

    Hi BL, I saw your response to my post and whereas I appreciate your input. I’m a little confused regarding how it’s related to what I wrote?

    My only guess is you were responding to my comment about our HIPPA right’s. IDK? However, I’d like to clarify what I meant when I wrote that rhetorical question. I was actually referring to a few issues I.e. A Physicians Professional Medical opinion regarding, “Their Right and Ability to determine and prescribe medications, they deem to be in the best interest of their patient.”

    More importantly, my remark about HIPPA really has to do with the creation of the “National Drug Database” and our medical right to privacy. As, the database will be collecting, storing and monitoring EVERY PERSON taking Opioid Meds. Plus, a few other types of medication’s as well. The Information being collected includes: What type of med your taking, how many other meds you also take, what dose you take of each med, how often you take it and even where it was filled! The Database also collects ALL of the persons personal information, their medical conditions, diagnosis and demographics etc!

    To be honest, I know for a fact I never signed a constant for this! This has nothing to do with my Dr. talking to another Dr. He may have referred me to. Or, perhaps my Pharmacist speaking to my Dr. about a refill request, genetic substitute or even a clarification of how he wanted a RX filled. It’s about complete strangers who know nothing about me having access to my medical information and trying to dictate “What’s best for me.” So, if this doesn’t fall under a HIPPA VIOLATION ACT, what would? Hence, the reason for my rather sarcastic HIPPA comment. 😊

    Assuming, this was the reason for your post. I may not have stated my point regarding HIPPA very well? If this is the case I do apologize. Even though I still really don’t understand the reason for your reply. Nevertheless, hopefully this post may better explained that particular part of my comment you responded about. 💫

    Take care 👣

  14. BL at 3:00 pm

    Loralie, when you first saw your dr, you filled out and signed papers. Did you read every single word of everything that you’ve signed when you filled out and turned in this paper work and do you remember all of it ? The statement isn’t specific. You had to have signed paperwork if your insurance covers any part of your care from the dr that presribes you pain meds. Often what I am referring to is in with that.

    If the PMP’s were against any laws, don’t you think that after all these years that it would have been brough up by now ? Some states have all prescriptions entered into the datebase, while others only specify Schedule II and Schedule III. Some states also have in their PMP how meds are paid for.

  15. Cynthia at 12:06 pm

    how about if we all try to reach these two men , Botticelli and Jones, BEFORE the Clinton gathering, as well as listen to the streaming. On the Clinton Foundation page, when you click “contact us”, there is page to send an email….should we do?

  16. Cynthia Oeser at 12:00 pm

    okay….sounds good…do you happen to know which constitutional rights are being violated? i don’t know which ones to mention on this. i’m sure it is forcing the doctors to ignore their hippocratic oath as well, if they can’t give patients medication to ease their pain.

  17. Loralie at 11:16 am

    Hi BL, I saw your response to my post and whereas I appreciate your input. I’m a little confused regarding how it’s related to what I wrote?

    My only guess is you were responding to my comment about our HIPPA right’s. IDK?However, just to clarify what I meant when I wrote that rhetorical question. I was actually referring to a few issues I.e. A Physicians Professional Medical opinion regarding, Their Right and Ability to determine and prescribe medications. Which, they deem to be in the best interest for their patients.” More importantly, my post about HIPPA really has to do with the creation of the “National Drug Database” and our medical rights.

    As it will be storing and monitoring EVERY PERSON taking Opioid Meds and a few other types of medication’s as well. The Information being collected includes: What type of med your taking, how many other meds you also take, what dose you take of each med, how often you take it and even where it was filled! The Database also includes ALL of a persons personal information, their medical conditions, diagnosis and demographics etc! I know I never signed a constant for this! And, if this doesn’t fall under a HIPPA VIOLATION ACT, what would? Hence, the reason for my rather sarcastic HIPPA comment. 😊

    Assuming, this was the reason for your post. I may not have stated my point regarding HIPPA very well? If this is the case I apologize for the confusion. I’m actually fairly intelligent! But, I have Dysgraphia, a little Dyslexic and can’t spell to save my life! lol. Therefore when speaking, my thoughts are usually (😏) very clear and organized. Yet, when trying to put thoughts down in writing there’s a disconnect! In a nutshell, “it’s extremely frustrating, literally painstaking and very time consuming when I do write!” Specifically, when spending alot of time writing carefully. Only to discover “I put the cart before the horse” again! 😂

    Take care 👣

  18. John S at 10:03 am

    Jorja G.:

    You asked a great question / where is the voice of the patient – 100 million I’m told.

    My question is this: why is the media, the public and the government so hell bent on not getting our input.

    We all know this mission to rid the country of opiate pain meds is not for the good of all Americans when so many are helped by them. No this issue has roots that go deeper. I hope that one day soon we can find out exactly why they refuse to listen to us when are numbers are so strong.

    “Ten million ignorances do not constitute one knowledge.”
    — Clemens von Metternich
    (1773-1859) German-Austrian politician

  19. Jorja G. at 8:53 am

    Having just returned from the umpteenth epidural/injection/whatever it’s called or referred to, I can say without any doubt that I wholeheartedly agree with most of the comments here. WHERE IS OUR VOICE in all this mess. It’s amazing to me that these so-called experts in Pain Medicine/Management haven’t the slight clue as to what we, the pain sufferers, go through on a daily basis.

    You all are right in saying alcoholism will rise, illegal purchase of opiates on the street will rise and lastly but most unfortunately, the suicide rate will most certainly rise.

    This is more than unbelievable, it’s unacceptable … period.

  20. Kristine (Krissy) at 7:31 am

    Cynthia, I hope someone answers you on what area to cite in your letters. I would like to know the same. I think you should quote anyone or any article you want. Just be sure to give the quote credit as to whom/where it came from. Maybe you can click on the NPR website and ask that question in their contact section too.

    Thanks!

  21. Doc Anonymous at 2:52 am

    Suggestion: If you do write to your congressional representatives, tell them your CONSTITUTIONAL RIGHTS are being violate and try to be specific. People are generally more attentive to violations of constitutional rights (and human rights) than they are to other issues. And remember that they really do not care about the suffering that the pain patient endures. Not only is pain a subjective experience, but the pain patient has been so vilified in the public media that there is a widespread misconception that the pain patient is just whining about nuisance discomfort, or that the pain patients are “addicts” in disguise.

    There is one analogy that I like to use: Opioids are for chronic pain patients what the ramps on sidewalks are to paraplegics (people who are paralyzed). Removal of opioids without justification precludes the pain patient from fullest participation in life and that is contrary to your rights set out in the Americans with Disability Act. And that is just one example of how the current political climate obstructs the civil an constitutional rights of pain patients.

  22. Cynthia oeser at 7:29 pm

    So you would recommend that we write to our political officials and tell them our stories? Are there any particular law numbers or bill numbers we should refer to? Their websites always ask for which area of interest are we writing about….what area would you call this? Healthcare? Pharma? Should we quote any people or articles? Thank you, Cynthia.

  23. Kurt W.G. Matthies at 10:14 am

    Political action, through demonstrating the depth and breadth of chronic pain across this nation, and the benefits received from opioid analgesics is one way to defeat this opiophobic cartel.

    Tell your congressman and senators your story. Overwhelm Washington with messages from the 100 million.

    Get up, Stand up and communicate your need for anagesia.

    There’s power in our numbers. Exercise your power and defend your right to effective treatment.

    @kwgmatthies

  24. Cynthia at 5:11 pm

    If a super pac is formed, I assume it would be posted here? I hope so. Or any other advocacy effort. I can help, if it’s something I can do from home…we MUST get organized!

  25. BL at 4:08 pm

    Loralie Buckley, when you first see a dr, you sign a statement giving your dr permission to talk to other healthcare providers concerning your care. This is something that very few people pay attention to, but they do sign it. This means drs as well as other healthcare providers including pharmacists.

  26. Loralie Buckley at 2:56 pm

    Wow, I believe I’ll be writing 1 of my shortest posts ever. Because, all of you wonderful people have expressed every opinion I have! I.e. The tremendous feeling of anger I have, the loss of our basic civil and human rights, the irony behind all of the players behind this BS, etc…

    Therefore, since Ya’ll did such a great job addressing this unconstitutional atrocity . I leave you with the following personal opinion. “The only thing these inhuman rules, laws, gross invasion of privacy and regulations; which will block the ability of chronic pain patients from receiving “The Medications they need to survive” will accomplish is…

    “A MASSIVE INCREASE IN THE # OF PEOPLE HAVING TO SELF MEDICATE!” It will, believe me because people will have no choice! We will see ALCOHOLISM statistics skyrocket! The purchasing and use of ILLEGAL DRUGS will go through roof as well! Finally… and I say this with profound sadness but it’s the truth. We will witness an unfathomable, heartwrenching and record breaking increase of SUICIDE’S! I’m sorry, but we all know it’s true 🙇…

    Where are our Advocates! Who was granted the “right” to take away a physicians professional medical decision; regarding what’s in the best interest for there patient! What happened to our HIPA rights! (lol!) As, we are now being tracked, placed in a national database, everything we take is being monitored and they want us to get on board for being contacted by substance abuse counselors whether we like it or not! They may actually be mandating we will have to do drug testing? F… That! F-them!

    This situation needs to be made viral, I don’t see why it wouldn’t meet the criteria for a class action suit and it definitely must be presented to Congress!

  27. jim nasium at 5:24 am

    Well said, I will gladly donate to that super PAC

  28. Terri Lewis at 6:26 pm

    https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/should-public-health-used-instrument-policing-terri-a-lewis

    Institutionalized discrimination has no place in the delivery of health care to anyone, let alone the most vulnerable among us. My comments are enclosed at the link above, along with an elaboration of this workgroups membership – most of whom are related to the addiction industry. Clearly these folks have NO IDEA who persons with chronic pain are or the conditions of their daily lives.

  29. John S at 6:05 pm

    Horse hooey, all of it.
    After 29 years I consider myself to be an expert on how chronic pain is treated. I just left my 37th MRI on my low back only to read about once again ; the non knowing telling the knowing what’s best for us – I’m sick of it and the system that perpetuates it. They claim opiate meds didn’t get used much till the 90’s for non cancer pain. I must have been on Pluto, my MD was giving me plenty of Percocet and or Codeine for my pain. My trouble started when my surgeon failed to see the disc fragments and after I complained of pain it was put in my records I was – here it comes / DRUG SEEKER /. Well my fate was sealed at least until they found the remaining fragments ; the cause of my pain. If its not visible on an X-ray or other test then it’s just not there and that’s when the red flag goes out and the DRUG SEEKER is doomed to a life of pain.

    I wonder, why is it that 100 million people don’t have our own PAC – even at $1.00 a person that’s enough money to buy lots of political influence. We can start with the DEA and move down from there.

    Let the doctors do their job and stop with all the B/S study’s that make us all look like addicts.

    If they want a real problem – make it impossible for us to get pain medicine, then you will see a real epedemic.

    John S

  30. jim nasium at 1:27 pm

    left a comment, I guess it wasn’t related to this article. Stated I use my medication for daily activities, IE, takeing a shower, getting, dressed, making breakfast, letting my dogs out. Stated I don’t use my meds for income, for getting High laying on the couch.

    Thanks for letting people comment on your article

  31. Bill Halper at 12:38 pm

    When I read these “official” findings, reports, and the other garbage they throw our way to make us feel even more sub-human, they do fail to mention that those citizens who do have chronic pain will more than likely see a rise in suicide…or euthanasia which I feel is more in keeping. Dr. David Nagel hit it right on the head when he mentions about what constitutes chronic pain. There really is no way of scientifically proving this (so I understand but I hope I’m wrong!). Frankly I do not understand why, if they are doing a study on the opiate crises, those who use these medications for chronic pain aren’t included. This most definitely is a one sided, flawed biased report as all the rest of them are. When a study is done, every nuance is studied to get a true reading! Never a mention about us! More so, are the powers that be medically knowledgeable enough to understand why our doctors prescribe these meds? Do they want the doctors to get permission prior to dispensing the life saving drugs with reports, scientific data, graphs and any other information? Doctors have enough paper work with insurances to then add this useless information requirements which could/would create a back log which means that we must wait for the approval before the prescription can be written. My other question is where is the AMA in all of this? I thought that they were an advocacy group of sorts of fellow doctors keeping up with the latest in medications, illnesses, diseases, etc.? Granted there are other pain medications out there such as Lyrica. I had horrible reactions to that as well as from Cymbalta and any other “pain medication” except for the oxycodones which I am not a big fan of, but they work!

    I’ve never wished ill to anyone…ever! But I do wish that these unfortunate knowledge challenged “officials” who do these studies need to experience what we go through every day, 24/7! One day is all I ask, but make sure that there are the usual flares we deal with, the stairs we try to walk up, live the life we must…most of us alone…then justify their “studies”. They also need to know the difference between addiction and dependence, big difference!!!

  32. Doc Anonymous at 11:57 am

    HOORAY for Kristine!!!! I have voiced my concern about the slick PR campaign that PROP is using or is a part of. It does take lots of money and the unanswered question remains: WHERE DO PROP and Kolodny get their funding? My gut tells me it is being funneled in through DEA funds and/or insurance company funds. But that is just a gut sense with no hard data to back it up. We do know that Kolodny works for Phoenix House which does get significant funds from the Federal Government..

    Suggestion: perhaps pain patients should start filing complaints with the office of Civil Rights, asking for equal funding and thus equal representation. Every federal dollar that goes to pay for addiction treatment and PR should be matched by a dollar going to support pain patients and the PR mechanism to get that message out on an EQUAL basis with addiction.

    Finally, PROP and Kolodny continue to do serious disservice to people who suffer the ravages of addiction. Addicts need to be treated as addicts and the should NOT be treated as “NOT PRESCRIPTION PAIN MEDICATION”. Focusing on denying pain medication to legitimate pain patients also diverts attention away from the difficult issues encompassing addiction.

    Suggestion:

  33. cyntia at 11:30 am

    i totally agree….just tell me what to do, that i can do from home, as i can’t sit or stand and i’m almost always at home. …i believe Joe Biden’s wife, Dr. Jill Biden, has a PhD in Education. she is not a physician.

  34. jim nasium at 11:17 am

    I am just tired of seeing in the media a war on prescription drugs. As a person with chronic back pain, this medication is needed to be able to function somewhat normally. I can no longer work as a carpenter due to the constant pain. The medication is needed so I can get out of bed to shower and get dressed. The medication is used so I can make a cup of coffee and have breakfast. The medication is use to feed the dogs and let them out so they don,t crap in the house. The medication is used to walk to the mail box and see the bills I can not pay this month. The medication is used to see my kids and pretend I am able to play games at the kitchen table without pain. The medication is used to continue to have a relationship with the woman I love. The medication is used to deal with the 500 pages of paperwork for insurance, for making doctor appointments.

    The medication is not used as source of income for my family. The medication is not used so I can sit on the couch all day eating pills from a Pez dispenser. The medication is not used to trade for other drugs you think I am using.

    This is called medication for a reason, it is medicine, used for a particular reason. You would never know I was taking “medicine” if you walked past me in the supermarket. Without this medication you would be saying “poor guy, I wonder what happened to him” as I limp past you unable to stand up straight. Just as you take Tylenol for the pain of a Headache, or sore muscles after a workout, I take oxycodone for the pain in my back. The difference being, your headache will go away, I will always be in pain.

  35. Dee Green at 9:35 am

    Kristine is right! We must have the PR that all of these other entities have in the media, otherwise we are sidelined. Our voices will not be heard without it!! Has anyone thought of crowd funding a PR campaign to get the voices of the 100 million of us that suffer daily? This has to be waged big or the anti-Opiod cartel will win and we will be left wondering what has happened to our Right to Treatment! Contact everyone, everywhere We have to stand up and be counted. Now more than ever! Joe Biden just went through this with his son😞 Imagine him going through that without pain treatment? How horrible that would be for the patients, families and care providers! He might be empathetic to our cause! It’s a suggestion, but it could give us a voice (his wife is a physician isn’t she?)

  36. Kristine at 7:14 am

    These studies: How can they exclude us so much?

    I’LL TELL YOU!

    I am a former publicist and I have something to say:

    We keep saying we need to be heard, and we’re doing our best with publishing articles and relying on comment sections, social media, websites, etc. And it’s all done in good faith and conviction and with the best of intent, and with passion, with a lot of volunteered time.

    BUT.

    We need a big, professional, powerful publicity campaign. Period. Please read on. (That was an alliteration beyond words!)

    I can do it, with your help, but monies would have to be paid to an accredited PR distribution service. I know where to go for that too. In fact, I’ve already asked one if they do any charity work, but they have to pay their distribution services, like AP, etc, so the answer was no. And yes, there are a couple of ways we can help a PR plan along inexpensively, in addition to the PR service, but that’s for “The Plan,” which would be the next step.

    This is how news gets out. It’s not magic. It’s a strategic part of a planned marketing campaign. (The PR department in a company is a vital part of the success of the company.)

    For our cause, we must tell the nation, through the media, that “we’ve got news for you.”

    All of our comments sections and articles are not reaching enough of the right people. They are only reaching us and maybe a small number of small news entities. We have to think big.

    If you’re going to make a voice, for example, for a new drug, you have your PR department and your PR firm, and BOOM, the news gets out.

    WE HAVE TO THINK AS BIG AS A BIG CORPORATION.

    THE LITTLE GUY WHO INVENTS THE GREATEST PRODUCT IN THE WORLD NEVER GETS RICH BECAUSE NO ONE KNOWS ABOUT HIM. He didn’t have a PR department.

    The best-designed website doesn’t have any success if it isn’t marketed (another type of marketing altogether).

    The product “Kleenex” didn’t get its name because in 1919 there was a rally and people were throwing tissues out of airplanes.

    And quite possibly the greatest potential President of the United States is sitting somewhere at home right this minute because s/he doesn’t have the money to even begin to campaign. It’s all about marketing.

    In addition to a strategic public relations campaign, a million of us should go to Washington in protest to get heard.

    That is the size of our problem, and the only way we are going to get picked up by news entities like 60 Minutes is if we do this.

  37. marty at 3:53 am

    Once again it just goes over people’s heads that chronic pain people need these meds. You keep talking abut ways to take away what little life we have left . How about spending a week with a chronic pain patient day and night. Be there for the crying the screaming and the praying to die because your meds were cut back. Help us in a out of bed while we stumble to keep our legs under us. Feed us when we can’t get by the pain long enough to make a meal. Take us to the store only to get there and not be able to move. And just to get the real idea of the pain, let us taser you every 30 minutes. By the time you recover the pain will return.

  38. Paula Lopez at 3:28 am

    I stand arm and arm with all my fellow pain sufferers,when I can stand ,,when only after I take the pain meds they so desperately are trying to take from us..I’ve been on pain meds for the last 10 years and take responsibly,,I would not be able to do daily task that most take for granted,,like laundry that at times is piled so high because I can’t just go running and at times go even slowly up the stairs to the laundry room…I too have lost friends from not being able to just hang out, go shopping,to a movie or do just any small pleasure most people take for granted.. and when your in chronic pain as most of us are just to live one day at a time becomes a challenge,,before pain meds I was only able to sit in a chair, or lay on the couch and even that was hard to do because every thought was consumed by the pain we experience daily , relentlessly it takes control over everything and every fiber of our being..We see our Doctors every month and some of us weekly,,how much more observation and control over our lives do they need,,they take our blood,,body fluids saliva and DNA,,yes you got it DNA to make sure our body’s are on the right pain meds and that our body types are in the proper dose and name brand,,,but we follow through with all this not because it’s fun,, hell its down right Humiliating but we go through this time after time not because we’re trying to get over on anyone ” but because we are Truly and Hopelessly in need of these pain meds just to live some sort of a normal life,, WHOME if not in true pain would go through all this,,it would be easier to go somewhere to a street corner and buy illegally,,and Truly that’s where this is all going to go if we’re stopped from obtaining our pain meds from a Doctor,,I already see this going on in the news and in police reports,, we’re not dying from getting our drugs reputably and Honestly,, we are being driven to the dark side of going underground to the street dealer who is lining their pockets from people like me who if this scrutiny does not stop,,will be the only recourse left for many of us who if anyone in the Big Government walked just one day in our shoes,,and that’s only if they could walk due to unrelenting pain,,This is sadly what we are being left with,,no choice,,no voice and absolutely no way out for some but to take their own life” not because that’s what they want to do but because we feel left out made fun of as far as saying suck it up and deal with it,,well let me tell you , even with pain meds it’s still very hard for some of us to get up and move on and deal with what were put through daily just to get the resemblance of a normal life,,a somewhat pain free life…Please for those of us who do everything by the book,,Please don’t take away the only thing that makes it possible to get up everyday and take care of our family and pets and do the things you do everyday without thought,,because we in pain have to schedule out everything because of the pain we suffer daily,,and Stress daily because of the mere thought that our medicine will be stopped and unfortunately so will most of us we will stop living,,not because we want to,,we’ve fought hard to live daily this long,,but because your taking our life by taking away our life sustaining drugs,,pain meds that help us get up and go on if just one more day….Please I’m asking for all pain patients,,Don’t take our lives,, someone needs us …Thank You

  39. Judy at 2:55 am

    Isn’t going to work for Rsd/crps. Why can’t someone help us? Drug addicts get all the attention they did that to themselves! Your study about opiods we NEED our PAIN meds find something that HELPS us PLEASE

  40. Cynthia at 9:34 pm

    It’s all so enraging! Please tell us what to do. Myself, and several friends, are all chronic pain sufferers and responsible users of opioids. Because pain sufferers feel so lousy a lot of the time, and would feel even worse without medication, we don’t have a lot of energy for fights and battles, but we must do SOMETHING! Our voices must be heard. Just tell us what to do, please.

  41. Deb at 9:34 pm

    BL…………….what family and friends. My chronic pain is all in my head and I don’t need meds to control it. (being sarcastic here) It’s hard to keep friends when you cancel plans time after time. I have no friends or family. They can’t’ be bothered with someone that doesn’t look sick. It’s just pain I should suck it up and get on with my life. So many people that have severe chronic pain are alone abandon by their family and friends.

  42. BL at 8:52 pm

    If chronic pain suffers, their family and friends were visible and vocal, there would be no way to ignore them. But, since those that suffer from chronic pain, their family and friends aren’t making their feeling heard and seen it makes sense that they aren’t given the weight that the addicts and their family and friends are. For the pain suffers that aren’t physicaly able to do things due to their pain, where are the family and friends ?

  43. Pharmacist Steve at 8:49 pm

    To bad they can’t focus their energies on the 1100 that die every day from medical errors/mistakes.. 250-300 per day of those is from hospital/nursing home acquired infections because staff don’t properly wash their hands or use proper aseptic technique. And out of those 44/day… we don’t track how many are SUICIDES because of under/untreated pain or being thrown into cold turkey withdrawal.. some estimate that > 50% of those 44 are SUICIDES. But then we only have abt 110 non-drug SUICIDES a day… with 22 being veterans or about 20% of all non-drug SUICIDES.. but.. apparently those lives don’t matter as much !