We're a decade into the "opioid crisis" and some people still cannot understand that prescription pain pills are, at worst, minor contributors. Yet the war against prescription analgesics goes on. This time it's Elizabeth Warren (and colleagues) who just don't get it. The Massachusetts Senator is pushing the DEA to allow partial refills of pills to reduce overdose deaths. What a ridiculous idea.
Although pain patients in the U.S. continue to struggle mightily to get the prescription opioids they need, at least they -- finally -- have the American Medical Association behind them. But in Canada, patient advocacy groups are also fighting the Canadian Medical Association, something that can be seen in an open letter to the CMA from the Chronic Pain Association of Canada. Here are some of the letter's highlights, especially those involving contributions from ACSH.
Sometimes studies are full of bad data. Sometimes they are just based on stupid ideas. Here's one that manages to incorporate both flaws. Should elderly people with broken ribs be given Tylenol in pill form or IV for pain? Perhaps a salami sandwich is a better offering ... since this study is full of baloney.
A fact-checking site called PolitiFact weighs in on the validity of the claim that opioid deaths decreased in 2018, thus supposedly marking the first time we are getting control of the "opioid epidemic." Let's fact-check the fact-checkers. Plus, Andrew Kolodny dines on his own words.
Representatives Terri Sewell (AL) and David McKinley (WV) are trying to push through a new law, one that would ensure that Medicare patients have equal access to "non-opioid" therapies after surgery. If they succeed, then Medicare recipients will have earned the right to suffer along with the rest of us. Brilliant.
Summary: In the mad dash to remove opioids from modern life, some researchers are willing to try anything, even Tylenol to control pain. How well does IV Tylenol work for post-operative pain from spinal surgery? Although the data are not complete, it's safe to say that it's no better than moose urine.
The DEA, which has been merciless to pain patients in its misdirected war on opioids, just stepped it up even further. Thanks to an Oregon Representative, we now have SORS (yet another way to restrict prescription painkillers) and SUPPORT, the law that created it. Just plain (and pain) awful.
Followers of the opioid crisis know that nothing much makes sense. And if you follow Proposition 65 madness in California, you know that doesn't add up either. So if you're in the mood for something that puts the Crazyometer® needle in the red, here it is. You will not be disappointed.
The denial of prescription analgesic medication to chronic pain patients has caused unnecessary suffering. But it has also driven up the suicide rate, trapping those who cannot bear to live without the drugs that have kept them functioning for years. ACSH advisor Red Lawhern, Ph.D., discusses the tragedy of intolerable pain.
Just what we don't need: Another anti-opioid (pro-pain) zealot spreading the false gospel. But we have one anyhow and his name is Jerome Adams, M.D, the U.S. Surgeon General. Adams cites a 2015 paper -- from an emergency department in Tehran, Iran as evidence! -- that IV Tylenol works as well as morphine. Too bad the paper doesn't say that. Or anything else either.