NSAIDs Often Safer, More Effective Than Opioids for Treating Pain: Expert

From Partnership for a Drug Free America:

While opioid medications are considered powerful painkillers, evidence shows taking a combination of ibuprofen and acetaminophen can be more effective in treating pain, according to Dr. Don Teater, MD, Medical Advisor of the non-profit National Safety Council.

Read complete article here.


Rate of Opioid Misuse Is Around 25 Percent, Addiction Rate 10 Percent, Reports Study in PAIN

Researchers Note Variability in Rates across Studies, Question Whether Benefits of Opioid for Chronic Pain Outweigh Consequences

March 30, 2015 – New estimates suggest that 20 to 30 percent of opioid analgesic drugs prescribed for chronic pain are misused, while the rate of opioid addiction is approximately 10 percent, reports a study in the April issue of PAIN®, the official journal of the International Association for the Study of Pain. The journal is published by Wolters Kluwer.

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NJ Residents Want More Information on the Drug They Are Taking

From the Partnership for a Drug Free New Jersey:

TRENTON – The majority of New Jersey residents want the legislature to mandate that their doctor tell them if their prescription medicine is addictive and believe those conversations will reduce the number of individuals who become addicted to pain medications, according to a recent survey effort between Fairleigh Dickinson University’s independent survey research center, PublicMind, and Partnership for a Drug Free New Jersey (PDFNJ).

The study finds that 91% of New Jersey residents agree, the majority (78%) strongly agreeing, that physicians should be legally required to discuss the risk of developing either a physical or psychological dependency on the prescription pain medication with patients prior to prescribing it.  Individuals 35 to 59 – the cohort most likely to have been prescribed such a pain medication, are also the most likely to (82%) to strongly agree.

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Legislation Would Require NJ Doctors to Discuss Opiate Addiction

From NJTV –
By Brenda Flanagan
Correspondent

“I was a heroin user. And I started off taking pills,” said Sharon Daniels.

Daniels says she kicked the habit but notes a steady stream of people come to Trenton’s Hanover Street looking to buy drugs.

“For five Percocets, real Percocets, it might cost you $50. If you use pills, there’s good chance you’re gonna be on your way to heroin. Shooting or snorting. The street value of heroin is much cheaper than buying pills,” she said.

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Requiring doctors to check prescription database could help stem N.J.’s opiate epidemic

Read a recent Opinion article by Elaine and Steve Pozycki in the Star Ledger

Gov. Chris Christie’s use of the bully pulpit to shine a light on the epidemic of opiate addiction in our state has begun to generate a long overdue public conversation about the most effective ways to solve the problem. Certainly, expanding access to treatment as the Governor proposes is a key component of any comprehensive solution.

Read complete Opinion article here.


OP-ED: PREVENT OPIATE ADDICTION AT THE SOURCE THROUGH EDUCATING PATIENTS

Read a recent Op-ed by Elaine and Steve Pozycki in NJ Spotlight:

Over the past two decades, the number of prescriptions for opiate-based painkillers has tripled, while dosages have grown stronger

The prime source for the national explosion of opiate addiction — whether in the form of painkillers such as OxyContin or in the form of illegal street drugs such as heroin — is the dramatic increase in the use of opiate-based prescription drugs. Over the past 20 years, there has been a threefold increase in the number of prescriptions issued for opiate-based painkillers, as well as a major step-up in dosage, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Healthcare providers wrote 259 million prescriptions in 2012 alone. Further, it has been well-documented that some people when they can no longer get access to prescription painkillers feed their opiate addiction by turning to heroin.

Read complete Op-ed here.

 


Over-the-counter pain medications are more effective for acute pain than prescribed painkillers

From the NSC:

Today the National Safety Council released a white paper, Evidence for the efficacy of pain medications, compiling research showing the combination of over-the-counter pain medications ibuprofen and acetaminophen are more effective at treating acute pain than opioid painkillers. As patients find that they are unable to refill their hydrocodone prescription, this paper presents alternatives that should be discussed with their physician.

http://www.nsc.org/Pages/NSC-Over-the-counter-.aspx