DEA Rescheduling Hydrocodone

DEA Rescheduling Hydrocodone

The most widely prescribed drug in the U.S. will soon be harder to get.

The Drug Enforcement Administration has announced it is publishing in the Federal Register its Final Rule for the rescheduling of hydrocodone combination products (HCPs) from Schedule III to the more-restrictive Schedule II.

“The DEA finds that the scientific, medical, and epidemiological data are robust and support rescheduling HCPs into schedule II of the CSA (Controlled Substances Act). Various drug abuse indicators for HCPs indicate that HCPs are widely diverted and abused at rates largely similar to that of oxycodone products,” the DEA said in the Final Rule.

Hydrocodonebtibu75200The rescheduling, which takes effect in 45 days, means that pain patients taking Vicodin, Lortab, Lorcet or other HCP painkillers will be limited to an initial 90-day supply and then will have to see a doctor each time for a prescription when they need a refill. Prescriptions for Schedule II drugs also cannot be phoned or faxed in by physicians.

The rescheduling will affect dozens of pain medications that contain hydrocodone (a complete list is available here). Typically in these products, the hydrocodone is combined with either aspirin or acetaminophen. Over 130 million prescriptions are written annually in the U.S. for HCPs – drugs that the DEA says have a “high abuse potential.”

Oxycodone, codeine and some other opioid painkillers are already classified as Schedule II drugs.

“Almost seven million Americans abuse controlled-substance prescription medications, including opioid painkillers, resulting in more deaths from prescription drug overdoses than auto accidents,” said DEA Administrator Michele Leonhart, “Today’s action recognizes that these products are some of the most addictive and potentially dangerous prescription medications available.”

The DEA first recommended reclassifying HCPs several years ago, a move opposed by the Food and Drug Administration, as well as many physicians, pharmacists, and patients who feared the drugs would become too hard to get.

Last year the FDA changed its position, citing an “epidemic” of overdoses and deaths caused by prescription opioid painkillers. The agency was also under strong political pressure to back the rescheduling.

“I am confident that rescheduling hydrocodone will undoubtedly begin saving hundreds of thousands of lives immediately,” said U.S. Sen. Joe Manchin of West Virginia, a longtime critic of the FDA.

“Family lives are ripped apart because of addiction and overdose deaths. Grandparents, great grandparents and neighbors are raising kids whose parents suffer from addiction. Students are unable to play outside because too many needles blanket their playgrounds. These circumstances are too common and simply unacceptable, which is why I am so grateful that the DEA has finalized the rescheduling process of hydrocodone.”

The DEA received 573 public comments on the rescheduling of HCPs. Over half (52%) supported the rescheduling and 41% opposed it.

“The U.S already loses hundreds of billions of dollars a year in productivity to chronic pain. Rescheduling hydrocodone will make this figure even worse. It will also add stress and undue burden to the people in pain who can’t see a pain specialist for a few weeks because of the doctor being booked,” said Andy, a chronic pain sufferer.

“I firmly believe that hydrocodone should remain a Schedule III medicine. It is a lifesaver for people who are in severe pain and cannot get a pain management specialist appointment soon enough.”

“Rescheduling the products to Schedule II would create significant hardships for all — leading to delayed access for vulnerable patients with legitimate chronic pain,” the National Community Pharmacists Association said in a statement.

But the DEA insists the agency “does not intend for legitimate patients to go without adequate care” and that patients will still be able to get the drugs if their doctor writes a prescription for them.

“There may be some practitioners who are reluctant to prescribe a schedule II controlled substance although authorized by State law to do so. However, the DEA notes that other schedule II controlled substances are widely prescribed. Given that classification has not deterred practitioners from prescribing those drugs, the DEA believes that when a practitioner makes a medical determination that a particular controlled substance is appropriate to treat a patient’s medical condition, the practitioner will prescribe the appropriate controlled substance, regardless of the substance’s schedule,” the DEA said in the Final Rule.

Authored by: Pat Anson, Editor

newest oldest
Notify of
jonnie froyd

i read in an editorial lettler in my local paper that the FDA will require HCP patients to take an annual urine test, to prove that they are taking the pain meds themselves and not selling them. Does anyone know if this is true? I have not seen it in any FDA rulings.


verena, Methadone isn’t given for fibro. But, it is given for other things like the back problems that you have. Do the drs that are trying to stop your Methadone know about your back problems ? Do they have your medical records from the drs that were giving you Methadone for your back ?

I feel so sorry for you not having insurance and not getting the help you need for pain.
I am O.K. for now I go to a pain clinic once a month.
I do have insurance.
Bless you.


I have had degenerative disc disease for the past 20 to 25 years. I use to be a CNA, which is a Certified Nurse Aide. And that is when my back pain started. Well. Through the years I have had to have my left kidney removed. And after that my body could only move certain ways. And then I fell and broke my left knee cap. U have a quarter of my knew cap left. I have since then really hard pain. I had to find a pain doctor. I had a $10 an hr job. But lost it after I broke my knee. So then going from a $10 an hr job to a $6 an hr job really hit my family hard. Then my insurance at the time stopped paying for my pain meds. Cause I had been taking it for about a year so they didn’t want to keep paying for it. And thats when I was on Oxycontin. So then this dr put me on Methadone. Cause I had to start paying out of mt own pocket. And thats what I could afford. Well I was also taking Hydrocodone. Or Lortab. And that was for any break through pain. And then I had to start going to our local health department. And then this dr was keeping me on hydrocodone. Or lortab. Then that dr left health dept so then I had to start seeing this other person. Well she doesn’t give or like writing pain meds prescriptions. But I explained to her how worthless I am when I have and hurting from constant pain. Then they finally determined I have Fibromyalgia. And that really really really hurts. And of course there is no cure for fibro. So since I have to pay for my own meds that what I kept taking. And I git a months worth at a time. So now this lady is wanting to stop my methadone. Cause she says that is not was fibro patients normally take. And I’m trying to explain to this lady why I am still taking methadone. Cause I have to pay for my own meds. I have no insurance. Well I have whats called “Health Access”. And it does NOT pay for any meds at all. So know they r weaning me off the methadone. And I just saw her the other day and she says my blood pressure was a little elevated. And I was like well u r wanting to stop my pain meds. And I am extremely worried about that cause I am totally worried about when I no longer have any pain pills. I will be missing work. Which I take care of an elderly lady. And I will be down amd out when I use up all my pain meds. We do have a “Pain Clinic”. However they r refusing to accept me since I have no freaking health insurance. Andi have never ever sold any of my pain meds at… Read more »

Kendra James

I am a 40 year old female with 2 very painful herniated discs, sciatica, degenerative disc disease, and other physical ailments. Without pain mediation I am unableunable to function properly. It’s difficultdifficult fr me to bathe, or even cook a meal for my family. I am on disability because I can’t stand or sit for long periods if time and it makes working a near impossibility. I had to go through all kinds of hoops to find a doctor who , would prescribe me pain medicine, and even then I had to sign a pain contract and felt I was being treated like a junkie. But I put up with it because hydrocodones are really the only thing that gives me any kind of relief. And I am really confused because I was already having to see my doctor once a month to get my meds, my doctor never prescribed me more than a month at a time. So these stupid so called changes don’t apply because my doctor was already cautious.So imagine my shock .last month when she hit me out of the blue and told me she would no longer be able to prescribe my medicine. I am devastated this isis disrupting my life to the point that I am feeling suicidal. Without the hydrocodone I am not able to move around, what quality of life can I now expect to have? Then there are no pain management clinics within a hundred miles of where I live. I am on a fixed income and was already paying out of pocket for my meds because medicaid stopped paying for my hydrocodones. I am out if meds and in pain, I never sold or abused my medication, and all I can see is a bunch of beuarucrats ruining my life. I wish these people could feel the pain that pain patients go through and they would understand. This is going to do mpre harm than good, and people that want to abuse drugs are still going to abuse them, while people with legitimate pain suffer. And to put hydrocone in the same classification as meth is so wrong and despicable.


CowgirlCat, Hydrocodone does some in long acting, Zohydro ER


This is a travesty! I have suffered from pain for 25 or more years and I am also a pharmacist. This new regulation is inhumane and unnecessary. This change will only hurt legitimate people and will do nothing at all to affect the drug abuse problems. The DEA and our Legislatures have no idea what is happening in the real world. Restricting access will only create more pain and suffering and it will drive the underground market thru the roof. What a crock!! Every time the government gets involved they screw things up for everyone involved with prescribing, filling and taking the medications legitimately with out any abuse or deaths from the usage.
The new law isnt just going to change the classification, there are also regulations that require drug testing on anyone receiving these medications and there is a national drug registry!!! The regulations also limit how many you may take per month and if you need more than that these idiots want to make us go on long acting forms of pain meds. Well folks hydrocodone does not come in a long acting form therefore the only other choices will be oxycontin or morphine!! They want us to change to a much stronger and more addictive drug. What the hell are they thinking and who are they to say what will work for me?. Every person responds differently to these meds and no one fits their perfect profile. Now there will be no effective pain medications that can be called in to the pharmacy. Hello emergency room because we wont be able to get anything for an acute injury!
I cant wait until these government people get caught with no pain meds and have to suffer like all of us have to. Maybe then they will understand. These new regulations is going to cause the illegal drug market to skyrocket! Maybe that is what they want because they are being paid off by these drug dealers.
I am saddened and disgusted to the point of being ill.


Thank you DEA for the rise in Heroin use. I wonder why?

Using this as a reference in my article I published today “Pain Pills: Chronic Pain Sufferers Speak.”
Thank you for always keeping us in the pain community better informed. This whole business with the medications is a mess. Criminalizing chronic and cancer pain patients and our doctors won’t solve the problem.

There are two concerns as I see it. My own unease is that untreated or undertreated pain will lead to depression, loss of self worth, relationships, livelihood, function, or suicide. Withholding opioids from patients who have come to rely on them to live a more productive life and come out of the shadows of isolation leaves few choices. Secondly, there are legitimate concerns for those who purposely abuse opioids not to relieve, but to mask their depression, inability to cope, and promote behaviors that lead to degraded self worth. Their resources for treatment have been limited for far too long. So we are going to serve them better by creating another conundrum?

I am unsure what people are trying to accomplish with their judgments of pain or mental health issues. Our perceptions need a complete overhaul. Quit placing blame. Offer support. Leave medicine up to the doctors, not the media. I am a disgusted and ashamed American. What has happened to our ability to treat people as human beings?

Rescheduling hydrocodone is only going to lead to more problems. It is abusive to withhold treatment for chronic pain, and it is a disservice to the addict to think for one second it is going to treat the underlying cause of their addiction.

I am on Oxycotin 40 mg and Oxycodone 15mg.
I take Tylenol with the Oxycodone for extra strength.
Each 3 times a day.
My Doctor says he wants to change my meds but I
don’t know what they will be.
The Oxycotin is almost $300.00 per month.
What else might I take that would take the pain away,
that would be cheaper????


Stephen S. Rodrigues, MD ,You’re Welcome.

verena aubert

I have degenerative disc disease. And I have Fibromaylgia. I have had to have my left kidney removed. And before that I injured my back working as a certified nurses aide. And I also broke my left knee cap. And after each incident I am not able to do a whole lot of things. I can’t move my body in certain ways to exercise. And now I can’t stand for a long period of time and I can’t sit for a long period of time. And I have had to miss days and weeks of work due to the debilitating pain I have to endure. I was taking Oxycontin and Oxycodone. But after taking them for about a year my insurance company at the time no longer wanted to pay for them. And even when my doctor at that time wrote the insurance company to explain to them why I need these meds. But even that didn’t matter. They just did not want to pay. Amd I could not afford to pay out of my own pocket. Cause they cost hundreds of dollars. Well now today I take Methadone. Cause that is the only pain prescription I can afford to pay myself.
Well today I have to go to our health department cause I have no insurance and I only work about 20 to 22 hrs per week taking care of a lady in her home. And with me only making about $9 an hr. Let me tell ya I can’t afford anything else. And this so called dr at the health department is scared to write my prescriptions cause she says she doesn’t like writing scripts for controlled substance. And she us telling me now that this pain pill is not used for fibromalgia pain. And I told her that I could not really understand why they say methadone is not used to treat fibromalgia pain. Amd I told her that I did know this. However since I have to pay out of my own bloody pocket that Methadone is the one and only thing I can afford to keep buying for my pain. Which is chronic back pain and fibromalgia pain. Oh and severe head aches.
So please do not stop prescribing methadone. For it is the one and only pain pill I can afford to pay for myself. And as with others that if there is no more pain pills to take they have with drawels and man those r not fun at all. I would have to go somewhere on my own and just cry and cry and cry. And if I have to live the rest o my life without pain meds I don’t know what to do. But I’ve been there and did that. My prayers will go out to each and every person with these kind of debilitating pain problems.

Stephen S. Rodrigues, MD

Data point:
In my office, my worse enemy which causes a stubborn, odd, aches, stiffness and miserable pain are cholesterol meds, Statins.

If you are in joint pains, nerve pains, feel decrepit and on statins, talk to your doctors to determine if you truly need them. Doctors give them out like candy and I find that only <10% really need them. Most people just need diet changes.

You could feel vitalized in a few day to weeks after being off of them.

@BL thanks for the link.


For anyone interested, there are details at the link below referring to some of the comments that were made during the comment period and why they ruled the way they did.

Get Ready; Get Set…. DEA Publishes Final Rule Rescheduling HCPs: Affected Registrants Must Swallow a 45-Day Compliance Window-


Looks like the street supply is about to get a little better. They’ll be flying out the back door of the pharmaceutical companies now!!! The price per pill should go down quite a bit, too.

And with the Silk Road back up, the overseas suppliers will have to ramp up production, too.

This is actually good news for the addicts.


i understand what u mean….same thing happened to me and now i too have a drug problem….i dont…i have a pain problem that the drs refuse to treat aggressively and so i have pain no matter what…at this point death would be welcomed greatly

john doe

I think everyone will start doing heroine. Its cheaper and will be easier to get. Think about it powers to be. Why would a chronic pain suffer want to go to dr every month when they can go to the corner and get almost same thing cheaper with out the hassle of having to see a dr.


I HAVE HAD CANCER FOR 4 years. I went to 4 different doctors before they found it. The thing is I was going to the doctors for severe stomach paln. I HAVE HAD 3 rounds of chemo and will have it again in OCTOBER. THE CHEMO IS TERRIBLE BUT THE CANCER HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH MY CANCER. IT’S FROM SCAR TISSUE FROM OTHER SURGERIES BUT I’M NOT A CANDIDATE FOR MORE SURGERY. I TAKE HYDROCODONE FOR THIS. I sit at the kitchen table until the pill takes effect and I can walk with my cane or walker. my insurance does not pay for any of my meds so being 72yrs old I sure WOULDN’T be taking them if I DIDN’T need them. like most people have said why do us old folks have to suffer because of others.

Donna Murphy

I have chronic pain and use loritab as the bottle says… I don’t like being classified as a drug abuser!!! After saying that I say this in 2006 I lost my daughter because she took one Xanax and 1 methodone. That is the drug that needs to be taken off the market but they have clinic’s prescribing constantly. From what understand it was given to people to get of Heroin makes no sense give another stong drug to replace another what bright person thought that one up. Methodone is the killer!!! I live in a small town the year my daughter died 8 teenagers died of the same thing. Does the DEA care about methadone they need to work on that drug that is given freely at clinic’s everywhere without a precription and when u go they ask if u want to bump up your dose .. I just don’t know seems as though someone is worrying about the wrong thing.. Methodone is the KILLER!!!


I had been using a Fentanyl patch for 6 yrs and never had a single issue or incident with it. I always used it exactly as prescribed. My medication was provided directly from the manufacturer on their patient assistance program and sent certified mail every month. One time an error was made in doing the refill and it was never sent. I went into withdrawal when I ran out and was forced into emergency protective custody and taken to a treatment facility until the withdrawal was under control. I have now been labeled a “drug addict seeking drugs” and now can’t get a doctor to treat me for pain at all because of “my addiction problems” HELLO!!! they knew and told me that I would be addicted within just a few days before I started using it, but the addiction would be medically controlled. I now have to endure pain that makes me scream and pray to die. When I have the intense pain all I can do is drive to a secluded place, lock myself in my car and scream for hours and hours, sometimes days, where no one can hear me screaming at the top of my lungs. Was I addict?? Yes. Did I have a drug problem?? NO! There is a big difference and only those who have been there understand that. It will come down to a point that I can no longer tolerate this pain and will have to end it myself because of a doctor who chose not to see the real facts and passed judgment that was incorrect.

I take oxycotin and oxycodone for pain.
In to way am I addicted.
How do others get them with out a DR priscription?


I am tired of all the chronic pain people being lumped in with the abusers…in my opionion…someone in chronic pain cant really abuse them, as I see it I dont have pill issues I have pain issues and because so many scam artists have abused the system us honest to God pain ridden people are the ones suffering. We get treated like drug addicts…have to take pee tests have to have random pill counts..never miss an appt. sign a contract…what the hell ever happened to dr do no harm?? I am being harmed by being in pain constantly, my lifestyle sucks im so limited in everything and i used to be soooooo active. going to appts every 30 days to get pills and spending 2 to 3 hrs going through the ropes to get that script is disgusting and painfilling. then every 3 months getting yet another shot that makes me eat constantly and really doesnt do much. at my age i would rather just die than live another 20yrs like this…and im sure there are many more like me….unfortunately.

I am oxycotin 3 times a day and oxycodone 3 times a day.
When needed.
I don’t like having the pain and would like to be pain free!
I don’t know what to do?


Stephen S. Rodrigues, MD

The problem and solutions are complex. I have found that you can not regulate people to do the what is in there best interest. That is just how we are designed.

The “ruling parties” are in control of me, you and the committee heads, so a way to sanity would be to rally around a single cause and demand a seat at the decision making table.

Ask for fair, safe, holistic, old and new, transparent, free and readily available pain care options.

You all should know by now I’m a fan of Medical Acupuncture, Myofascial release therapies with hands-on and with needles.

Stacy S.

Diane and BL - I am not ignorant or uneducated. I’m sorry that you do not agree with my views. But as you say, “Walk a day in my shoes!” My statement was not directed at individuals who have to deal with chronic pain yet persevere, as hard as it may be, through their lives. YOU are not the problem. Unfortunately, there are people who do not have your integrity and continue to make bad choices….this is what needs to be addressed. I understand that some people do not get to see first-hand how horrible this epidemic is, so I apologize if my statement was misunderstood. I wish only the best for you through your struggle and pray that these upcoming changes do not negatively affect you as anticipated. Hang in there.


CC, the drug abuse epidemic will never go away. People must be responsible and use common sense and intelliegence when they are prescribed strong medications. You can’t compare the ones who have chosen to abuse drugs and the parents who contribute to it to those with severe chronic pain who require certain medications to function doing the basic activities of daily living. I can assure you if someone wants to get high, they will find a way. Out of curiosity, what about those who have driven drunk and the people they hit weren’t fortunate enough to make it to the ER ? Are you as outraged by that and do you put your time and energy into telling people about those patients and trying to reduce the number ?

Jason B, just so you know, there is only one legal Methamphetamine product, Desoxyn®. It is currently marketed in 5-milligram tablets and has very limited use in the treatment of obesity and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). When anyone lumps the use of legally manufactured drugs prescribed by a physician for a legimate medical purpose and the use of illegally manufactured drugs and those who abused them together, it hurts those who need that medication. It is like those who lump legimate severe chronic pain patients who take their medications as prescribed by their physician for legimate pain with those who steal/sell/buy and abuse pain meds because they want to get high.


Oh so that make you so above all of us that deal with real pain. I am not and never have been a pill popping drug shooting person so DO NOT lump us in the same category: Talk to the real people this is going to hurt. Us little people. No I do not get” high” on my meds no I do not SELL my meds. I take them just to live day to day. Walk 1 day in my shoes than we Wil talk.

Jason B.

One more reason we don’t need the the DEA and their war on drugs i.e. war on poor people. They have classified marijuana as a schedule I drug, the most restricted. Yet meth is a schedule II drug, the same as a pain pill will be soon. I’m sorry but I have chronic pain and need hydrocodone daily. I in no way shape or form would put hydrocodone on the same plane as meth, for many reasons. There is no therapeutic dosage of meth, we all know how destructive and addicting that insidious drug is. I’m not a user so correct me if I am wrong, but isn’t the sole purpose of meth to get an extremely euphoric high? And at the cost of damaging feel good receptors in the brain no less. Do pain pills cause that level of damage, even if abused? For some reason I doubt it. So now I, along with thousands of other people who require medication for pain management, will have to waste valuable time at the doctors because of why, the DEA, an organization that should be canned. I’m sure my doctor is going to be thrilled over how much time he is going to be wasting thanks to this stupid decision. Besides, I’m pretty sure a 3 month supply is enough to kill anyone when taken all at once. Just one more way, along with the losing drug war, the DEA causes more problems that it solves.


Epidemic people! SMH In the er I have to deal constantly with manipulating drug seekers, overdosers, injection site abscesses, poor kids of drug addicts sitting in the waiting room alone or on the room with their parent acting a fool…. This is ALL THE TIME AND EXISTS EVERYWHERE! Something definitely needs to be done b4 we continue with this “walking dead” population….

DIANE — you have chronic pain, that is evident and indisputable. You do NOT need to justify your needs to elevate your pain. You are a hardworking American like the majority of us. Only the ignorant, lazy, looking-of-a-handout American would say something as ignorant as that.

They do not deserve your outrage. You do not need to prove anything to parasites like this who are terrified of people with integrity. They have nothing better to do than to judge others because it’s easier than looking a their own ugliness.

Fight for what is right but don’t take it so personally. Ignorance is the affliction of the ignorant. It is not our job to fix ignorance. It is our job to stay away from it.


Diane, unfortunately, if someone had never lived with severe chronic pain, they have no clue. Our physicians have been convinced that only terminal pain is that severe. But, those that make these statements have no clue. Unlike you, I wish this pain on those who believe this and I wish them not being able to get medication. Then and only then, will they realize what it is really like for many of those who suffer. I wish them having to quit theie jobs, not be able to do basic things like shower or prepare a quick meal, not being able to properly dress in just pants and a shirt without someone helping them every time, etc.

Strong pain meds should not be given because someone hurts. Or because they suffer from chronic severe pain and don’t want to make lifestyle adjustments. But, we aren’t talking about someone hurting, or not being willing to make lifestyle adjustments. We are talking about severe chronic that prevents someone from doing basic activities of daily living without the help of pain medication. Non medication pain management should also be included, but some people require pain medication.

I find it interesting that the Social Security Administration has guidelines for the evaluation of pain to determine if it is debilitating for disability cases. Yet those like Stacy S. remain uneducated and ignorant.

As far as those who have died because they abused pain meds, that was their choice. They choose to get high. No one held a gun to their head and made them. Stop making excuses for their choices.

S H.

I have been told this was coming I will see how this will affect me and others ..I already have such concerns and I cannot understand how people can do this , punish everyone ..its like eliminating air because serial killers breath it . So very wrong and inhuman ,..My poor husband has to endure ( as many of you know ) when I wake in pain even with meds and of course cannot sleep because of it ..sometimes crying for hours because of the stress let alone the actual pain.. It becomes so fearful when you try and understand how you can live with this pain situation . I am 65 and have raised 4 children three college grads one in Navy and a programmer, One is a DA. Does that sound like I ever wasted a minute complaining or not being responsible / I grew gardens , sewed and worked in church etc started a business BTW paid taxes .. Seriously could gather a series of people that would swear in a court how productive I was ..until turning 50 and hit like a bomb went off in my life fatigue pain etc etc no sleep tested for two years experimented on by Drs. trying to help.. and slowly but surely loosing my life ..fighting taking any meds until I finally realized I was loosing the battle and gave in to medicine ( very little compared to most but it helped ) and got my life back ..Exercised , lost weight ..I was never really overweight and started eating fresh foods ..made a better routine for my life ( LIKE GETTING TO FINALLY SLEEP ) and with all combined I have improved. But I am still in Pain ( Fibro and I know what it will be like for me from this garbage thought up by seriously deranged people. I am not a addict as most or all in chronic pain are not .We do want to have a life ..I am so blessed to have GOOD Dr. ….Emory and Duke credentials Pain clinic and understands pain .Now this ..Incredible ..All the life I have tried to regain ..trying to clear my body of enduring pain ! More stupidity for people who are so misguided as usual from people making rules for all of us. I invite anyone to challenge me and my life and how I manage it with meds . How dare some one remove my chance to live out my life with dignity and have a relationship with my husband of 43 years. Now what will he have to endure ..He still works with a heart condition and cancer and chemo ..I have had to try and help and take over to help and its been hard but we have managed and now this. Without asking anything from Government ..Now this ..How will I be able to drive in the winter ..because I will not drive with medication in me and have a almost 4… Read more »


I.have read some more comments and I am sorry for you that have lost a love one. I did when he was 41/2 to a drunken driver. Why don’t they pull all beer,and liquor off the market. I have seen it kill more the prescription drugs so DEA put that in your little peace what ever and do ………..


kay, “A practitioner may provide individual patients with multiple prescriptions for the same schedule II controlled substance to be filled sequentially. The combined effect of these multiple prescriptions is to allow the patient to receive, over time, up to a 90-day supply of that controlled substance.”

Issuance of Multiple Prescriptions for Schedule II Controlled Substances-


I don’t know who you deal with to make a blanket statement like this. 1st I am employed full time 45 to 60 hours a week on my feet the whole time. Yes I had 4 failed back surgeries the last 2 were hours apart. Yes I am in pain 24/7 with barely any relief so no I am NOT A LAZY GOOD FOR NOTHING DISABLED PERSON. You in your so called profession must know everything about what I live daily. God you wouldn’t make it a day. I just pray you NEVER have to deal with what NORMAL people deal with and if you do I pray you find a HONEST Dr who will help you.

I’m also prescribed pain meds. Had surgery on my lower back two years ago after working all my adult life to support myself and my children. I’ve been rediculed and called a “pill head” by family and friends. Why? I didn’t ask for it to happen to me. I’ve always been a hard working woman and to be treated the way I have been the last two years has just opened my eyes to a lot of things. I’m told a lot of my pain is from arthritis, but no arthritis medicine is ever offered to me because the doctors assume the pain meds is all I want. I even ask for it and I’m told that I’m on enough medication. I know people abuse their meds but what about the ones like me who take their meds as the are prescribed to them? It all boils down to this…The good have to suffer because of the bad.


For us that live daily lives with chronic pain….sucks. Maybe we should ground all air flight too because.. Well planes do have it might save people. Maybe require drivers to retest for a new drivers licenses because people have auto wrecks retest every 90 days to maintain safe driver skills..see where this can go?? We can regulate every aspect of life..gee why did you not require people that smoke have weekly test to make sure no one ever gets addicted to cigarette’s?? ¿

That’s great now the government can sell more heroin they smuggle in

Stacy S.

I can understand the frustration of those who have true pain but you should direct your anger towards those who abuse prescription drugs….you know who you are….and not the DEA. Prescription drug addiction is an epidemic in America and it infuriates me. There are many things other than pain meds that help pain. “Chronic pain” does not have to be disabling. Let’s be honest, pain is subjective and some people aren’t honest with their healthcare provider or themselves….sometimes you just need to put your big girl panties/big boy pants on and deal with it. Reinsert yourself back into life and work. Trust me, YES I do not what I am talking about. I deal with this every single day. Working in a level one trauma center emergency department, I see people in pain but I also see people who are good for absolutely nothing because of their addiction. While it is sad, it is also very frustrating to deal with the entitlement these people express. Because these medications are so easy to get, America is saturated with “disabled”, non-working, non-productive members of society who do nothing more than complain about how unfair their FREE healthcare is and how difficult it is to get their pain meds(because providers are expected to support, encourage, and facilitate this behavior/addiction?). Do not get me wrong, I truly believe that people have pain but I KNOW that addiction is real as well. So before you respond, be honest with yourself. Could you be one of those people? If not, then try and understand why it is so important for these medications to be more controlled.


I am one who did go to website and leave a very long statement about this decision before it was made. I can understand somewhat, why they are doing this, and do agree with a lot of the comments here. My biggest issue with this is that I have no insurance and costs me 150.00 just to walk thru the doors of my drs office. I already see him every four months, and its a struggle for me to get the money together to do that. Add another 150 on top and I’m screwed. Who has the money for that?? Not me!!! There is no assistance for folks like us who still work because they HAVE to, but are struggling to get thru even a six hour shift. Either I stop working at all and wait a year or longer for any assistance, or I don’t eat to be able to pay for the Dr. Its one big circus for folks like us, because of those that decide they are going to use them to get high instead of the intended use. I think the government has other issues to deal with, and let’s not worry about all the college binge drinking or those that spend all their time in the bars drinking themselves to death. Let’s just make it more difficult for those that actually NEED something to help with ADLs. I am also on tramadol which I take more than the hydro’s, but now they are trying to make those harder to get. They’ve already taken one med away that was helping me, let’s just take them all away.


BL, your doctor cannot write post dated scripts anymore. That is absolutely not correct. You can have one script at a time with no post dated scripts.

Bill Fritsch

Interesting comments. So far no one has commented about the economic hardship they will experience because they will no longer be able to sell their Vikes on the street. This is a fact! No surviving parents have made any mention about their teenagers dying from an overdose on their Norco prescription - that they weren’t abusing. Another fact! And what about all the folks who drive while impaired by pain meds they bought on the street. Can’t send in a comment when you’re in an ICU - fact! I’m still waiting to read a comment that is also a fact - hydrocodone works, not because it takes away pain, but because it makes you not care about pain. Or anything else.


They keep saying these new changes don’t hurt pain patients, but I can tell you with 100% certainty that is not true. Pain patients are the ones suffering the most. Don’t believe me? Go to any online group and see how we are being treated.

Chronic pain is unending. It isn’t something you can tough or wait out. There are diseases and injuries people will have the rest of their lives.

It’s very easy for someone else to make comments and judgments when they are not living in our bodies or being treated they way we are.

No one should have the right to force chronic pain patients to live in agony, but that is what is happening.


1 already have to do a yearly pee test have to be seen every 30 days by pain mgmt dr and it has been this way for at least 2 yrs. I live in NM…
I don’t get “high” from these drugs they barely give me any relief!!! I have crappy insurance and have to pay over $100.00 per office visit.


So when and where did the DEA get it’s medical degree? The police state, in the guise of health, safety, and welfare, now heavy hands the medical profession and the patients they treat by mandating needless suffering for persons in chronic pain. What politician(s) is pushing this mandate upon the DEA in order to prove to the populace he or she really cares about the populace ?
Yesterday I stopped at a crosswalk to allow a man obviously in his sixties slowly cross the street. I could tell by the way he walked, his slow pace, it pained him to walk. He wore a construction hat and his jeans and t shirt covered in plastering dust. Thank the Great Recession of 2007-2008 forcing baby boomers working past their physical endurance to economically survive in our inflated economy. Denying these hard working baby boomers hydro codons will make their daily lives painful misery.


Kurt W.G. Matthies, I agree. I bet the number of Emergency Room visits for toothaches soar as well as Emergency Room visits for the flu. Cough meds that drs use to call in, especially for children at 2 am, will also become Schedule II.

Kurt W.G. Matthies

I feel sorry for all the people with Friday night toothaches. No longer will your dentist be able to telephone the pharmacy and get you some relief over the weekend, until you can be seen Monday morning.


People drinking alcohol while they are taking certain meds meds is one of the reasons people dying. Their deaths are counted as dying due to opioids and/or certain other meds. Unfortunately, had they not been drinking they would still be alive, but that is never mentioned.


Lula, The DEA was formed to expunge and keep ILLEGAL drugs from the US. Not decide what legal medications are allowed to be manufactured and what quantity can be manufactured. The FDA should be making these decisions based on need and Dr discretion
This is a case of the pot calling the kettle black. This drives up costs to everyone. You may think it doesn’t effect you, but when it happens to you or someone you love, you will wonder why the DEA was the driving force behind these types of decisions.