By Ed Coghlan
CNN’s Town Hall program “Prescription Addiction in America” had the National Pain Report email boxes buzzing on Thursday.
National Pain Report contributor Gracie Gean Bagosy Young was in the audience of the show that was moderated by Anderson Cooper and featured CNN’s Medical Editor Sanjay Gupta. As a chronic pain patient, she was hopeful that she could participate. While invited, she was not asked to speak.
“While the Town Hall brought up some valid points about addiction in America, they failed to adequately make the crucial distinction between addicts and chronic pain patients,” she said. “People with pain matter. We deserve fair and compassionate treatment. We also deserve a voice.”
Another frequent National Pain Report commenter, John Sandherr copied us on an email he sent the show producers this morning.
Your program reminded me of the “Reefer Madness “movie from the 50’s / one sided and a lot of the wrong information.
What worries me the most was the absence of a voice of a Chronic Severe Pain patient. The show all but called for opiates to be outlawed in the U S.
As a patient that suffers from severe long term pain my life has been made better by the use of pain medication.
Returning to work full time, starting a new career, making more money and even more important, the medication allowed me to be a better husband a better father and now grandfather.
Ten years on opiates and my dose has not increased but my condition is much worse. My doctors compare my pain to that of an end stage cancer patient but I will suffer much longer (and that’s Ok) as my condition eventually puts me in a wheel chair or confined to a bed.
All I ask is that I be given the medicines I need to live my live with joy and hope.
Yes, I have tried every other modality offered to me but none come close to the relief I get from opiates. If that single solution is taken from me and others like me, it would only start an even worse epidemic – mass suicide due to untreated pain.
Yes, opiates are a problem but the media has taken the human factor out by blaming the pill and not the person that abuses the medicine.
Prince is dead so BOOM the media is Jonny on the spot to blame the drug and not Prince.
Because of your show Americans will think that anyone using opiates long term is a drug addict and pain patients will pay the price; untreated suffering due to fear and the wrong information.
It’s sad to see CNN put a noose around the neck of the people that use opiates as prescribed, people that just want to suffer less and be useful.
After eleven back operations and nearly 30 years of pain I believe I’m qualified to judge your program. I’m sorry you didn’t get the whole story.
If you want to follow John Sandherr’s lead and contact the producers, here are their email addresses. If you are going to contact them, don’t yell and scream…. suggest to them ways to tell the story that chronic pain patients say the media are missing. Having worked in the media, I know well that producers want story ideas, not invective.