Mary first took oxycodone after a minor surgery and found she liked it. Returning to her surgeon a month later with vague ongoing pain, she received another prescription. Her primary care provider took over from there — until one day that physician checked a urine drug screen and a prescription monitoring program (PMP) report, only to find that she was obtaining various opioids from several providers. The physician cut her ...

Read more...

Recently, a generally healthy friend of mine had two small, unrelated surgeries over the course of a few months. For the first, a small operation on his hand, he received a prescription for 30 oxycodone pills. He used one the night after surgery, to make sure pain wouldn’t wake him. Over the next few days he used a few over the counter acetaminophen tablets for his modest discomfort, and then ...

Read more...

Who was Ryan Haight? Ryan Haight was an 18-year-old honor student from La Mesa, California who died on February 12, 2001, from an overdose of hydrocodone ordered from an online doctor he never saw — and shipped to his home from a rogue online pharmacy during the beginning of the opioid epidemic. The pharmacist, Clayton Fuchs, filled ...

Read more...

Imagine yourself as a patient burdened with a chronic disease that necessitated daily medication adherence to function. Now imagine that medication has become so stigmatized by society that you feel judged and ashamed every time that you use it. That’s the world that individuals with opioid use disorder are forced to live in when they’re prescribed methadone or buprenorphine to get through the day. Without these medications,
Read more...

A contract is an agreement stipulating the rights and obligations of the signatories. In most cases, a contract is consulted when a dispute arises. When all is proceeding swimmingly, the contract remains dormant in a file drawer or in a digital file. In general, decent people resolve differences in the old-fashioned way utilizing the twin arcane legal techniques of reasonableness and compromise. Remember them? Yes, it is possible to settle ...

Read more...

A guest column by the American Society of Anesthesiologists, exclusive to KevinMD.com. Every physician takes the Hippocratic oath and promises to “do no harm.” In the face of the current opioid epidemic, this includes protecting our patients from dependence and addiction, including those who are suffering from debilitating acute and chronic pain. Sometimes this involves ...

Read more...

There’s no disputing that the opioid crisis has become a public health emergency in the United States. And not a day goes by when health care providers don’t encounter some aspect of this epidemic. Far too often, the mention of addiction spurns images of homelessness, back-alley deals and crime. While that can certainly be the case, addiction is an “equal-opportunity employer.” Allow me to share two true stories that illustrate ...

Read more...

Purdue Pharma recently ran a full-page advertisement in the Wall Street Journal and the Washington Post asserting that the company, which manufactures prescription opioids, wants to limit the use of prescription opioids. While this ad may have left some readers confused, one point rang true: “we believe the country needs a new approach to prescribing opioids.” In its approach to addressing the opioid crisis, Purdue Pharma is encouraging limiting patient access ...

Read more...

I am against all forms of bodily pain, both foreign and domestic. I wish the world were pain-free. When I am suffering from even a routine headache, I want immediate relief just like everyone else. The medical approach to pain control has changed dramatically even during my own career. When I started practicing a few decades ago, the strategy was pain reduction. We gave narcotics for very few indications such ...

Read more...

A lot has been written about Suboxone, the buprenorphine treatment drug. For many, Suboxone acts as an effective medication to treat opioid addiction. For others, it’s a highly-valued street drug that is commonly diverted and misused. To understand and acknowledge the darker side of Suboxone we have to look back at its history over the past 16 years. History of Suboxone Suboxone was first approved by the FDA in 2002 to treat ...

Read more...

19 Pages

Most Popular

Join 141,000+ subscribers

Get the best of KevinMD in your inbox

Sign me up! It's free. 
close-link
✓ Join 141,000+ subscribers 
✓ Get KevinMD's 5 most popular stories
Subscribe. It's free.
close-image