The DEA, an arm of the Department of Justice, released a 184-page report claiming that prescription opioid analgesics is the drug class that's killing the most Americans. Huh? This sure seems strange. But a closer look suggests that the only thing strange is the manner in which that data is used in the report. The DEA spins and wins. Pain patients lose.
In a trend described as shocking, people desperate to obtain narcotics are intentionally injuring their pets to divert and abuse the veterinarian’s painkiller prescriptions. While terribly sad this is no surprise: After all, this is addiction.
It's no surprise that drug traffickers are quite creative about distributing their products. Recently, the Drug Enforcement Agency and Homeland Security pounced on an operation that used Donald Duck and Winnie the Pooh objects to disguise illegal shipments.
It is no secret that narcotic abuse mostly oxycodone and hydrocodone (the ingredients in Percocet and Vicodin, respectively) is a serious and growing problem in the US. So, leave it to our government the DEA in particular to screw it up more. Except, this time, their actions are certainly going to hurt patients with legitimate needs, and probably do little or nothing to combat the abuse problems. It may even make the problem worse.