While fibromyalgia, medical marijuana, CRPS and migraines were all covered by the National Pain Report in the last week, it was the Centers for Disease Control that dominated the coverage and reader reaction. The CDC first re-opened its public comment period on its opioid guidelines under pressure from the pain community. Then the CDC issued another press release that talked about the dangers of opioid medication saying that opioids were involved in 28,647 deaths in 2014 and opioid overdoses have quadrupled since 2000.
Those created an intense reaction from National Pain Report readers. In particular, the CDC took much of the incoming fire.
Paul Clay, like many, called out the process that had led CDC to its controversial guidelines when he wrote, “Your committees should have at least a couple of chronic pain patients on these panels.”
On our Facebook page, the theme was familiar. Why is the CDC (and the DEA) focused on opioid abuse at the expense of the millions of pain patients who use opioids responsibly.
Juli Link wrote, “I’m not an abuser. I’m a patient. I have a right to be treated as such instead of lumped into the notion that anyone who takes an opiate is a degenerate.”
Mary Eischen went further. “CDC needs to keep their (its) nose out of my pain medicine. I don’t abuse it. I am NOT an addict. I do depend on it to take away my chronic pain. So leave us alone.”
Marty Collachi also thinks the CDC is focused on the wrong problem.
“They are so worried about Junkies dying that they are putting honest chronic pain patients through absolute hell. So much hell that they better start counting the numbers of how many suicides there will be because of the legit patients not getting the medical care they need and deserve.”
While the National Pain Report is honored to attract (and share) this reaction from the pain community, others focused on the need to make sure the government is hearing complaints, and once heard, reacts to it responsibly.
Amy Vallejo’s reaction to the CDC story was direct.
“Keep writing legislators, governor, president and everyone in between. We need more PUBLIC Facebook pages to share articles and use hashtags so people can look things up faster. It’s a lot of work but WE have a voice and WE individually and together need to let them know what the real deal is!”
Terri Lewis, PhD, who has taken the CDC and other regulatory agencies to task for not having the right data and then interpreting it the wrong way, called the CDC report “junk science”.
Dr. Lewis, who is experienced in such matters, also wrote a story that recommends HOW to make a public comment to a federal agency. It’s recommended read if you plan to leave a public comment on the CDC opioid guidelines. Her advice is being clear and not emotional. (Tips on how to comment on CDC guidelines)
Once you read Dr. Lewis’ story and you plan to comment, you can do so here.
If you do submit a comment and want to share with our readers, send a copy of it to us here,