Who is the DEA Listening To?

Who is the DEA Listening To?

By Steve Ariens,

It is hard to figure out if the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) is not listening to anyone. For sure, it has very select hearing and/or agenda regardless of what is being said or facts that are coming forward.

The DEA evolved from The Control Substance Act (CSA) in 1970. Originally the CSA created the Bureau of Narcotics and Dangerous Drugs (BNDD) that became the DEA in 1973. Many believe that the DEA’s primary charge is to prevent drug diversion, but in reality, its primary charge is to arrest those who divert/use/abuse illegal substances. The DEA is part of the Dept of Justice (DOJ) and they are LAW ENFORCEMENT.

Steve Ariens

But they are a “special” sort of law enforcement, they have the authority to make new interpretations of the CSA and then go out an enforce the interpretation that they just made.

One has to ask, why is the use/abuse of opiates illegal? Back in 1917 our judicial system declared that opiate addiction was a CRIME and not a DISEASE and our judicial system is still working under this unenlightened century old decree. Both our current and previous Surgeons General have stated that addiction – all addictions – are a mental health disease and not a moral failing.

So here we sit with two different federal agencies with conflicting opinions concerning addiction – particularly opiates or other substances that the DEA has declared have no valid medical use.

The DEA is large. It started with 1200 employees and a $43 million annual budget. Today that the war on drugs currently costs $81 billion annually with over 12,000 employees. By the way, the current number of dedicated opiate abusers has remained constant, around 1% of the population.

What could explain such open-ended funding of the DEA?  Could it be that about 40% of Congress is attorneys, who are part of the judicial system.

Anyone who has ever dealt with an attorney you know how good they are at generating billable hours and revenue and the more things that Congress causes the DEA to have people to arrest the more money that flows thru the private jails, court systems, judges, prosecuting and defense attorneys… the entire judicial system partakes of this $81 billion-dollar expenditure.

Could it be that the DEA can be oblivious to the facts that are coming to the surface because our Congress or some senior members of Congress have their collective back?

After all, Congress gave the DEA the right to civil asset forfeiture law and has done nothing to rein in their activity of seizing assets of people without even charging 85% of them with a crime and then making it extremely difficult to recover their assets?

Could an influential someone in Congress persuade the CDC to produce those opiate dosing guidelines, – something that even the DEA couldn’t pretend to have the authority to get published. Add to it that they were produced behind closed doors with “supposedly” anonymous committee members. We heard the head of the CDC declaring that the guidelines did not bear the weight of law… conveniently as this same person is “heading out the door” and the Veterans Administration has already moved forward on implementing these guidelines?

In the two years since the CDC released those guidelines, many other within healthcare community have adopted them, including insurance companies, Prescription Benefits Managers, corporate healthcare providers. Many state legislatures have passed laws with the same, similar or even stricter opiate dosing and now the CMS appears to be aligning with these same guidelines.

All the while, those in the chronic pain community send letters, emails, faxes, letters to their representatives in Congress about how the war on drugs had turned on those pts that had valid medical needs for taking opiates. Only to get back form letters expressing concerned about the opiate crisis.

Could the CDC, DEA, CMS and other federal agencies just be doing the “covert bidding” of some powerful members of Congress?

What we do know at this point is that since the CDC guidelines have been published the number of deaths/suicides of chronic pain patients has increased. the cost of treating chronic pain pts would surpass the cost of treating diabetes if it was properly treated.

Since Jan 1, 2011 there have been 10,000/day baby boomers become eligible for Medicare, and this will continue for at least another 11 yrs. As the oldest baby boomer reaches their expected life expectancy, the social security fund is projected to go into a negative cash flow status.

Is there a covert agenda here? Who is the puppeteer and who are the puppets?

Steve Ariens, P.D. is a retired pharmacist and chronic pain activist who is a frequent contributor to the National Pain Report.

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Ken Atwood

I have peripheral neuropathy in my feet and rheumatoid arthritis. I’m in chronic pain daily and all my doctor gave me is gabapentin which does nothing at all for pain. I have asked my doctor about some medication that might work for chronic pain but all he said is nerve pain damage is hard to figure out but I’m doing the best I can. He was just making an excuse for what is really going on. The doctors should be the ones who know what patients need for pain relief and not the DEA who are not doctors!

W H

You ask who the DEA is responding to and posit powerful members of Congress. This is the problem with so many of these issues. We fail to ask the all important question: “Who owns those guys (Congress)?”

Both Congress and the DEA are “owned” by, skillfully guided by, massively well funded and sophisticated corporate interests. Whether it is the pharmaceutical industry creating artificial shortages via the DEA manufacturing quotas, creating fear and mutual disdain among pharmacists, physicians and patients, or the private prison industry, or the attraction of civil asset forfeiture, or any number of other totalitarian techniques. They all generate fear in physicians and patients. People don’t argue about price when they are desperate. People don’t speak up when they are personally in fear. This is deliberate. This is Gestapo. Welcome to the Fascist States of America, at least the healthcare part of it. As in virtually all things related to government that are corrupt and harmful to citizens, follow the money.

Mary

Very astute question, Steve! I enjoy your writing very much. I will answer your question with another question: Who was the Board of Education of Topeka Kansas listening to when it denied integrated education because of race. African Americans versus Caucasians?
So much medical research disregarded from the late 1990s. So many “best practice” endorsements from state Medical Society “Standards of Care” allowing physicians to make use of opioid therapy for intractable pain using a higher titrated amount if a patient was facing severe uncontrolled pain.
And now? We are faced with health policy that is forcing injured patients to suffer severe untreated pain (or undertreated).

Linda

Between This article and the comments, it’s everything anyone could need to know about “opiod crisis”.

I’m amazed at how incredibly smart all of you are and honored that you are all here and that I can be one of The National Pain Report’s readers.

There is a wealth of information here; information that would absolutely educate fully ANY member of Congress or anyone else who should know.

Thank you!

Patricia May

Wow Steve, your article is right on. It explains so many things I have often wondered about. And, I feel as useless to fight this as anyone.
I have a general question: I’m down to 100 morphine units, the DEA says that max is 90. I know I have to go down to 90, but I suspect my doctor wants me below 90.
Anyone getting feedback from their doctors?
My doctor had me go thru 2 major surgeries with NO PAIN MEDICINE, exc the pain meds I’d been on for the past 10 years. I had 2 liver surgeries (it was full of gallstones). I had a drainage tube that came out my stomach that constantly emptied stomach acid onto my skin. It burned a big whole in me. I lost so much weight from the pain my bra size went from 38 DDD to not needing a bra. I had no chest. And now wear a size 4 slim clothes, Then in 2015 I had a laminectomy for my spinal stenosis. Again, no pain meds after I’d left the hospital. And I’d cut my Fentanyl from 50 down to 25 mcg. Prior to surgery. I feel like I’m not living in America anymore.
Now L4 vertebrae slipped over L5 and they want to do a fusion, I can’t, they won’t give me pain meds for the surgety. I heard on the National news that a doctor in DC says NO ONE needs more than 2 days worth of pain meds after ANY surgery. Where the heck to they find these idiots?
Let me know if your docs are taking you below 90 morphine units.

Kathleen Kaiser

Alice as far as I understand there are no new laws on prescribing opiates. There are certainly guidelines but they are just that definitely not a law. And as we all know insurance companies and pharmacies have made up their own guidelines most of which follow along with the CDC guidelines. And it’s my belief that all of this is being done to make them look good to their constituents.

Kathleen Kaiser

Steve Arien this article you wrote is wording very well and full of good information. You hit on points I had not even considered. I know that a lot of people say it’s all about the money but they blame the pharmaceutical companies and to me that just doesn’t make sense. But I’m sure it is about the money and perhaps votes and prestige as well. Thank you for a very well thought out and well written article. I will definitely be quoting you in the future.

Alice

Constance, is the new doctor adequately treating your pain? Doesn’t he or she have to abide by the new prescribing laws? I’m just wondering if it’s worth making appts with other docs to see what they say. My pmd cut meds in half. Better than nothing. And I don’t want to jeopardize that if the odds are low.

Old-Goat

It’s fairly easy to find what is going on here, you are on the right track following the money. The addiction doctors represented by PROP/Phoenix House invested $2million dollars on lobbying in 2009. Individuals also contributed the max allowable amount to certain political campaigns the same year the ground work for this addiction epidemic was created. The head of PROP/Phoenix House and outspoken opioid critic “Dr.” Andrew Koldny was heavily involved in promoting the use of buprenorphine during this period as well. During the 2013 update of the catalogue of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5) the addiction industry made sure there were new inclusions of such novel ideas as “Opiate Use Disorder” and “Opioid induced Hyperalgesia”. Who would profit from making treating pain with opioids into a psychological disorder? Or no longer differentiating legitimate pain patients from addicts, calling them all opioid users? Who profits from the idea legitimate patients are addicts in need rehabilitation treatment? Perhaps those who turned their 2 million dollar investment in to billions in taxpayer funds for addiction treatment? You may not like Kolodny and his pals at PROP/Phoenix House but you would sure like them doing investments for you.

Taken a step further who profits from turning opioid addiction in to an illness rather than a behavior that needs modifying? It is advantageous to the addicts as well as those running rehab facilities. There is no responsibility on the part of an addict anymore, they are sick with a hard to treat disease. So plentiful relapses are expected and why not when they can deny their part in their addiction? As long as that denial is encouraged there is little hope for an addict to recover. And it keeps rehab facilities full, with long waiting lists. You want the parties responsible for the addiction epidemic that is being billed as something new? Follow the money, indeed…

nana

The DEA declined to help out kolodny and act on this quick enough so kolodny and gang of thugs took it to his former boss at the CDC to start this stuff. Whoever gets to shop around their agenda and who has connections wins.

Constance

Steve C by all means DOCTOR SHOP!!! If a mechanic doesn’t fix your car, no matter how many times you tell him it doesn’t start in the morning, do you continue to take your car to him?? NO!! A doctor is in *business* to provide a service. If your current doctor is not providing that SERVICE find a new doctor who listens and wants to help you; there are still excellent doctors out there. ‘Doctor shopping’ was a major issue when people would go to multiple doctors and fill multiple prescriptions. That is (thankfully) no longer possible because of new computer programs that track every RX we fill. I love this tracking system because it proves we are filling and using only what is prescribed to US. It seems no matter what we say or do it is a big red flag, so I am just honest with my doctors and say what I need to say. It’s all I can do. 4 months ago I left my old PMD because ‘his hands are tied’. B***S***! I am not on high doses or large quantity. Did I doctor shop?? You bet I did!! And I found a great, compassionate doctor. My health and well-being is my full time job, nobody can do it for me. I do whatever I have to do and don’t worry about how others analyze my words or actions.

Kel b

Please consider joining us at the Pain Rally this Saturday!
April 7th, 11am EST at ALL Capitols throughout the country.
“Don’t Punish Pain Patients”, can find info on facebook.

Call your local media, share your story, share rally info. Call your representatives, they will meet with you, I have an appt April 6th with mine.

Kel b

Please consider joining
“The Don’t Punish Pain Rally! “This Saturday, April 7, @ your local capitol building, 11EST.

Contact your local media regarding the rally & your every day untreated pain.

Call & meet with your representatives, bring information and documentation to that meeting. Bring a few people with you, make bigger points in numbers vs single bodied.

Alice

They don’t care. They’ve heard all of these pleas now and they don’t care. If we take our own lives, in their eyes we’re just helping them eliminate the problem. The problem of us selling our medications to others is what they believe. They figure in a couple of years this will all have lined itself out one way or another. It’s hopeless. Those of us who have been able to live somewhat normal lives with prescription medications need to come up with a different plan now. I quit reading these awhile back bc it’s so depressing. I for one am just about done.

Laura Cornwell

Not the people. The DEA, FDA, DOJ and on and on use drug laws, urine tests, arrests, civil forfeiture to CONTROL US. It is getting worse. These agencies and organizations kill and jail people. They do not protect us. They are worse than ANY drug dealer. We all know it, and if you disagree, YOUR ONE OF THEM.

CareGiver

Thank you.

We are headed into some very dark days. It appears that petitioning our federal masters isn’t working, so perhaps it’s time to take matters into our own hands and resurrect the wisdom of our great grandparents: we take care of ourselves.

All opiates have one thing in common: the poppy. Specifically, papaver somniferum, otherwise known as “bread seed poppy”. These darlings can grow ANYWHERE, and the seeds are legal available in most (if not all) states.

Desperate times call for desperate measures. God bless.

Patricia May

I’m depressed now. Nobody is going to help me. And all I want is Fioricet for my headaches caused from the two eye surgeries I’ve had, and now I need another specialty surgeon to do a muscle surgery (so no Botox). I have Graves’ disease and it caused thyroid eye disease. Fioricet worked great until the new CDC guidelines and my doctor is running scared!! It’s not even on the DEA’s radar but all the doctors (8 different specialists) are too scared to prescribe it. I’m screwed. I won’t bring decreasing my pain meds by half because all of us are coping, not coping, with our chronic pain.

Mist

I need to send him a reponse but don’t know how ,this about use,abuse,treatment and recovery. NOTHING about medically dependents who will never be cured.
Here is my statement. for all us Chronic Pain Patients to the DEA.CDC,FDA ,REps and anyone else who will listen “CURE US OR TREAT US .”
How many of us will never be recovered or Cured that has the need for opoid meds for the rest of our lifetimes,we will never be cured.They are causing unnecessary suffering and torture but I bet the ones making the bills if they were to suffer for a day with my pain and many of my fellow Pain friends and family they would be begging for the relief that every human being is entitleted 2.

Mist

find the members in Congress,CDC,DEA,FDA who have lost someone close to addiction and you will start to see a pattern I am just guessing.
Doctors know pain kills .and all these agencies know pain kills and that is the agenda .
Here is letter I got from Ron KInd I will not vote for him again and I will make sure to share this letter to let other chronic pain patients know this so they can be informed
RON KIND
Third District, Wisconsin/Senior Whip/Ways and Means Committee
Subcommittee on Health/Subcommittee on Trade
February 2, 2018
Mx. Misti
Dear Mx had to x name
Thank you for contacting me about drug use, addiction, and recovery. I appreciate the opportunity to respond to you on this important issue.
As you may know, H.R. 993, the Opioid Abuse Prevention and Treatment Act, was introduced by Rep. Bill Foster (D-IL) on February 9, 2017. This bill requires the Department of Health and Human Services to award grants to states to create a peer review process that would investigate questionable or inappropriate prescribing and dispensing patterns of drugs. These grants would also facilitate training of health care providers to be able to screen patients for drug abuses, and require continuing education to providers on schedule II and III drugs. The Heroin and Opioid Abuse Prevention and Treatment Act has been referred to the House Committee on Energy and Commerce for further consideration.
As a former prosecutor, I have seen firsthand how drug use destroys lives. I was proud to be the lead Democrat sponsor of the Jason Simcakoski PROMISE Act, which became law in 2016. This law will improve the use of opioids in treating veterans through expanded drug safety initiatives and improved tracking and monitoring of opioid use by VA physicians and patients.
Widespread drug abuse has become a crisis in our country. Our response to this crisis must be swift and strong. Rest assured that I will continue to support legislation that fights drug use, combats addiction, and supports recovery.
Again, thank you for contacting me. Please do not hesitate to be in touch with additional comments by contacting my office toll-free at 1-888-442-8040 or visiting my website, http://www.kind.house.gov , where you can find updated information, sign up to receive my e-newsletter, and send me an e-mail.
Sincerely,
Ron Kind letter did not fit so had to adjust and remove personal info

Lorri

I have fibromyalgia, CFS, and Sjrogen syndrome. Needless to say I live in horrible pain 24 hours, 365 days a year. If it wasn’t for my RXS I wouldn’t be able to get out of bed. I would have no quality of life without them. The patients that truly need them are being hurt. While the druggies will still find a way to get their pills to get high. Doctors go to school, they know who needs this medication. Don’t punish us that truly have legitimate issues. I’m outraged at this nonsense!!!!!!!!!!!!

Heidi schlossberg

BRAVO.

Lady Mary

Always true! Thank you for the research and clearly written pieces that enable us to go from,”aaaaahh! I hurt!”, to,”do you know how the DEA started?” A billion thanks as I lay here in pain waiting for tomorrow —when I can get my small opioids prescription filled and can wash my dishes.

Bruce

Nice article, Steve. Every one of these alphabet agencies has been created with virtually no oversight and operates autonomously outside the law. The law that they supposedly enforce. Trump is talking about blowing up the CIA, FBI and NSA – and putting them under military intelligence. Unfortunately, the powers that be ($) have convinced him that the DEA is some sort of law and order agency for the benefit of the poor bastard public that needs additional oversight. At least that’s what they’re selling. It’s no coincidence that opiates were declared illegal a century ago at the same time the Federal Reserve was illegally devised in order to create a debt mechanism for the US so that the globalists could cash in. They’ve been running the show ever since. The politicians are just a delivery system for their message. I’m seriously considering doing a podcast on YouTube for our community. With some humor mixed in. Yeah, we can be funny despite excruciating pain. Oh, then you must “not be suffering that badly”….No, we’re regular people and the issue is more complex than a cut and dried narrative. So tired of kissing butt every month just to get half of the potency of medication I need. Just because somebody in Ohio shoots heroin. Or takes randomly marked fentanyl. And then dies because of it. Insensitive? Yes, I am. I could care less. Addiction is a disease, and it’s also a choice, I should know, I was hungover for 30 years and nobody ever forced a drink on me.
Keep up the good work, Steve – we are so grateful.

Steve C

As a chronic pain patient, what options if any do I have when my primary care doctor decides he has to follow cdc guidelines on opiate prescriptions or lose his license. He started to taper me off and then last week without warning his office just refused to write my monthly prescriptions for pain meds. I could start the search for a new doctor, but that would be doctor shopping. I could try to find a drug dealer (Hmm, why are so many people dying from heroin and fentanyl). Or, I can just suffer through the abrupt discontinuation of the only thing that helps. I’ve been through 10 years of chiropractic, several neurosurgeons, orthopedists, 3 primary care, and 2 pain mgt docs. I’ve been through RF ablations, blocks, sterioid injections, and two surgeries. My last pain doc had asked my insurance company for prior authorization for another procedure, it was rejected. I am not a criminal, I take my meds as prescribed, have been stable on the same dosage of meds for 2.5 years, and have never asked for an increase in meds. What have we done wrong, why are we being persecuted.

Holly

You got it Steve!! And there is no one to to turn to to have them all charged!!!!!

Terry

I’ve been waiting for someone to talk about who is really behind ruining my life. Just like anything in the government, if you want to know who is behind something, follow the money. 100% of every decision congressmen and senators make always comes back to money. We are not equipped to battle the billions of dollars paid out by lobbyists in Washington. We just have to sit back and take it. [edited]

Hayden

I agree with Mr. Ariens. Who are the people behind the DEA becoming the appointed judges, lawyers, medical experts and gestapo when the supposed “guideline” for opioid prescribing physicians was introduced? As a patient, the current DEA actions concerning our doctors that really do have their patients best health interest and overall well being in mind, worries me. As a citizen, in the most “free” country in the world, current actions of the DEA…… really worries me. What agency will be the next to attempt people management (control)?

My pain management doctor told me very recently that an effective, pain management medication will be developed……sooner or later but, at what cost? Lives, real lives of patients with legitimate documentation of successful, beneficial use of opioid medication responsibly prescribed, in a tailored medication and effective dosage used by responsible patients.

IF our elect, appointed, and healthcare experts were really concerned for John Q. Publics healthcare, specifically pain management needs caught in the fallout and crossfire of a stated “opioid crisis”, the current CDC “policy” would be amended immedicately or better yet, repealed returning ……some…..authority and judegement back to our personal physicians. At least some authority until a positive, beneficial medication prescribing guideline for the patients so badly affected from the CDC guideline can be authored. Authored, inclusive of doctor and patient testimony documented as truly needing and responsibly prescribing/ using medication individually prescribed that is effective for the patients pain management.

Lori T.

Excellent article, it really makes a person wonder.

carl s. dunn

We could go on and on about the politics of politics and politicians, dear readers, but as you are pretty much aware, absolute power corrupts absolutely. We the people are existing in a society and culture where the schools have succeeded in dumbing down the minds of newly minted voters, and most are so apathetic and oblivious to reality due to their noses being in facebook for hours and hours a day…well, you get my meaning. These voters won’t vote, and in addition, they wouldn’t know why or who to vote for to save their lives. The only thing we citizens can do is organize a movement to remove the corrupt representatives out of office. Maybe the Democrats will bring reality back to government, maybe not. This anti-drug movement by politicians has a life of it’s own, and it will take a powerful organized movement of citizens marching to Washington demanding change or else. What else? Either voting them out or anarchy, which helps no one. So, I suggest strongly that we all begin movements and groups to wrest control back from those corrupted politicians and institute some leaders who are sure to represent the people’s wishes rather than corporations and greedy politicians desire for more power and wealth. Anyone who can should attempt contacting whatever opposition party be it a third party or the Dems, and get involved. Freedom remains an elusive thing that requires frequent blood-letting and sacrifice to remain alive as there will always be someone trying to gain control when things get lax so power can be gained and money made. It is always about the money, isn’t it!

Kelli Davidson

I have always said that this opiate usage only became an issue when marajauana was no longer an issue. Politicians need something to pretend to save us all from and the DEA is full of people who want to go out and do all the things they learned at the academy and i know this because I was in law enforcement and know that we were all over trained with not enough people to arrest to satisfy in our mind all the time we dedicated to learning how. Politicians need an agenda and a talking point. The true facts do not support a crisis and never did if you take the time to read beyond the panic written headline. The addict will always find a drug so restricting pain medicine for those that need it does absolutely nothing to stop them. I have no access to pain medicine now and I haven’t gone out and looked for heroin or something else because I don’t take pain medicine to get high. It is a violation of our natural rights given to us by the constitution…the right to pursue happiness…

Jackie D Bennett

Excellent article. Thank you for such a neccesary, insiteful contribution, Mr. Ariens. I’ve followed this all too consuming controversy since the beginning. Their entire approach is nonsensical; rather than gaining new perspective for how or why this is happening, each day drags on with growing hopelessness, and endless frustrations. I’ve continued to feel chased by exactly the inexplicable lack of reason in these issues just as you’ve pointed out here today (and I can’t seem out run it).
Do you suppose they have any idea (what) one or the other particular crisis entails, or (which) crisis they’re actually fighting/causing, and is there any chance they’ll acknowledge or look further into why their ‘efforts for a resolve’ (have failed) miserably and will only (continue) to cause new or worsening disasters related to either one?

In hindsight, I guess you’ve already answered that with the projected goal for thinning out those social security lines, in advance.
This is, without a shadow of a doubt… an all out War on (Americans), Pain Patients, and the means to an end of our Civil Rights.
Who’s in charge, and has anyone asked, or seen proof of American Citizenship or Medical Evidence of Human Species?

Craig

Thank you Steve ! I’ve been using the fentynol 7.5 patch for 17 years.. now all of a sudden it’s a problem.i also get breakaway Norco 5 mg for raining days . Is there anything we can do to make them listen ? Craig T

A related question is that of media subservience to DEA. A team of journalists from Britain’s Sky News (linked at http://t.co/mMC74zslQT ) show troubling images of the Sinaloa Cartel’s factory making illicit synthetic drugs. Sinaloa gave away their ultra pure methamphetamine for free, got Americans hooked on them, then when the meth addicts needed opioids to calm themselves down and couldn’t steal any more, the Sinaloa Cartel now sells them synthetic opioids like Fentanyl.

If a British reporter and his camera crew can get in and tell this story, why does the Amazon Washington Post insist on pretending this never happened? DEA should certainly know about this meth problem. And NIDA scientists have known for 30 years about the link between meth addiction and opioid craving. Why is CBS ignoring the NIDA scientists who can explain what’s happening, and instead, talking to Kolodny and the CDC, who keep ignoring the meth link and blaming pain patients?

DEA’s trouble is understandable. For 48 years they told America’s parents it was safe to put their children on Adderall™-brand amphetamines for ADHD and that cannabis was too dangerous to test, to see if it relieved ADHD. Surviving adult ADHD patients usually switch to cannabis on their own because it has fewer side effects than amphetamines do. To admit that they filled prison cells with ADHD patients for using safer cannabis, will take a lot of courage, but that confession and apology is what DEA must muster up the courage to make. Continuing to pretend that amphetamines are safer than cannabis, invites recreational users to try methamphetamine. That’s what’s causing the epidemic of amphetamine addiction and the poisonings with mixtures of liquor, sleeping pills, and opioids, by folks trying to overcome the amphetamine side effects.

Why are the media helping spread the falsehoods and bury the truth?

CRPS patient

I wish there was a Pain Simulator for these people. Unless you’ve experienced CRPS pain, you couldn’t possibly understand it. I didn’t before I had it.
If I couldn’t treat my pain, my life wouldn’t be worth living; it’s hard enough as it is.
Why can’t they go after the people trafficking drugs and not compliant pain patients?
I have contacted politicians and even the Whitehouse begging them to listen to experts on CRPS and still the rhetoric of “Drugs are bad, including pain meds” is the constant public message.
Will they be happy when scores of us are dead? I have lost all faith in the Government and I can only wonder what they’d do if they lived with this pain for years, day in and day out.

Nancy

This article is “right on”. Hopefully it will fall in the hands of someone who will listen and do something positive to bring about change.

Robert

Understand that this is an economic decision, not medical.
While our debt has just exceeded $21 trillion, it’s the future debt of baby boomers which is truly staggering. Social Security, Medicare, Prescription Drug, etc., is an unbelievable $123.3 trillion. I cannot help but believe this draconian approach to seniors has something to do with our future inability to pay for the elderly.

The amount of this debt means every single person owes $375,901.11. Can anyone tell me how we can possibly deal with this, or has the government already started to work on a solution.

Virginia Null

Ah, yes, we’ve got to kill the cash cow before it chews thru our corn fields!
I couldn’t have said it better, my friend, and bless you for being bold enough to speak your mind.
It’s ALWAYS about the money! And protecting the ass ets.

RSJ

Thanks for your insight. I’m a chronic pain patient. I have had 3 back surgeries, 6 knee surgeries, an ACL reconstruction, placement of a spinal cord stimulator, removal of the stimulator because of a recall on the battery and charger and the installation of another stimulator.
I had so many steroid injections that I now need 2 hip replacements because the steriods have destroyed the cartilage in my hips.
The past 2 years have been a living hell. The “opiod crisis” has resulted in my not being able to get enough medications to manage my pain. I started pain management in 1997 after my 3rd back operation. I never had any compliance issue and had some semblance of a life. I was able to stay active enough to earn a living and do most things that people do to enjoy life. I was prediabetic and was able to state that off with staying active. I am now full blown diabetic and am taking about $1800 a month in drugs to control it. I am disabled and unable to work and am a few months from being homeless.
Two years ago I started a downward spiral when our illustrious Governor Hassan declared her run for Senate. Despite burying her head in the sand about the the actual issue, the Herion epidemic, she declared that the issue was was now a prescription opioid crisis. You see it had to be prescriptions to blame for it because of her party talking point opposing Immigration and the Border wall.
The reason they are blaming prescription opiates for the problem is that they do have a little control over prescription drugs. The real issue is that the war on drugs and the previous Obama administrations failed immigration, Afghanistan and border control policies were and continue to be dismal failures due to a total lack of leadership. As long as we have the open Mexican border why bother with a war on drugs?
The Government position on chronic pain management is only going to make Herion more popular. It is a lot easier to aquire than prescription opiates.
Let’s face it, the Taliban is winning the war on the West by flooding our countries with the cheapest and purest Herion in the history of the drug and by torturing chronic pain patients with ignorant unconpassionate polices of our government.

I have often thought the very words and implications of those words. It is truly a scary time for people in need of chronic and even short term pain management.
Is this a way to throw out the baggage? I’m shocked and horrified to even contemplate this theory.

Mary

Why is CMS Medicare ignoring “best practice” medical standards of care for patients diagnosed with intractable pain from injury AND those patients are treated by specialist pain management physicians (not general practice physicians) AND many of those patients are responsible with taking daily dosage greater than 90MG MED? And they got their quality of life restored? Acute pain attacks happen because of physical injury. Why has the practice of medicine by specialist physicians been politicized?

Why the secrecy? Why was this contrived opiate epidemic data hidden from the media 5 yrs ago? And CDC’s questionable data analysis that combined legitimate opiates use with illicit use?

Why was proven research regarding patients’ varying dosage needs been omitted from this political effort which harms responsible patients and their treating specialists?

“One Size Fits All” for opiate meds does not work, and it abuses patients. It is a slap in the face to specialist physicians who practice pain management.

I cannot turn the clock back to erase a 1990s accident which caused my cervical spine injury, a 2nd fusion requiring repair surgery (yet leaving broken vertebrae bone in my cervical area). It is likely that with a reduced dosage, I will lose quality of life, unable to work – even part time.

My current specialist is cornered; my specialist is “bullied” by this nightmare despite having responsible patients who adhere to taking their Rx meds responsibly.

Science, medical research and the legal rights of patients stricken with intractable pain are being violated. Is this ethical? No. This political “push” is amoral, unethical, without compassion, unscientific and insults all proven medical researchers including the extensive work of Dr. Russell Portnoy and Dr. Marco Pappagallo.

Where is “due process” for public health policy “planning”? We must protect patients and their physician specialists as stakeholders.

Drew Pavilonis

That is just scary, but I have always known this whole thing was about money.