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Author: Subject: Painkiller Abuse Kills 40 People Per Day

Peach Master





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  posted on 11/3/2011 at 07:45 AM
Painkiller Abuse Kills 40 People Per Day
11/2/2011 2:12 PM ET

(RTTNews) - Painkiller abuse leads to 40 deaths per day in the U.S., new data from the CDC reveals.

One in 20 U.S. adults has admitted to having abused prescription narcotics in their lives. Vicodin, OxyContin, Opana and methadone are among the most heavily abused.

A major part of the problem is that more people are taking the drugs for a high, rather than for pain purposes. A California study showed that 62 percent of the state's painkiller prescriptions were written by three doctors.

"This stems from a few irresponsible doctors," CDC Director Thomas Frieden said at a news teleconference. "The problem is more from them than from drug pushers on street corners."

by RTT Staff Writer

For comments and feedback: editorial@rttnews.com

http://www.rttnews.com/Content/HealthNews.aspx?Id=1749804&SM=1
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True Peach



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  posted on 11/3/2011 at 08:01 AM
62 per cent of California's prescriptions for pain meds are written by three doctors???

that seems almost mathematically impossible.

 

True Peach



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  posted on 11/3/2011 at 08:18 AM
quote:
62 per cent of California's prescriptions for pain meds are written by three doctors???

that seems almost mathematically impossible.

You're right. The article should have said 3% of doctors. Here's an excerpt from WebMD:

quote:
It's not just a statistical blip. Prescription drug abuse -- taking painkillers not for pain, but to get high -- has tripled since 1999. Rogue doctors are a big part of the problem, according to CDC Director Thomas Frieden, MD. Indeed, a California study found that 3% of doctors wrote 62% of painkiller prescriptions.

http://www.webmd.com/pain-management/news/20111101/40-us-deaths-a-day-from- prescription-painkillers


Just for some perspective, on average 93 people die in traffic accidents each day in the U.S.

 

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  posted on 11/3/2011 at 02:11 PM
What kind of perspective is that Bob? And what proportion of car accidents are cause by drugged up drivers? I bet lots.
 

True Peach



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  posted on 11/3/2011 at 02:44 PM
quote:
What kind of perspective is that Bob? And what proportion of car accidents are cause by drugged up drivers? I bet lots.

It's no particular kind of perspective. It's just that when I see a number like 40 per day I have no idea if that's huge or insignificant so I try to benchmark it. I could have said that 90 people are killed by lightning bolts per year or 250 die from heart attacks each day. It's just for perspective, not an agenda. About 6,750 people die each day in the U.S., all of them for some reason. Of those, about 40 die from painkiller abuse, about 250 die from heart attacks, and about 0.25 die from a lightning strike. That means about 6,450 die for some other reason entirely. Perspective.

 

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  posted on 11/3/2011 at 02:56 PM
Cannabis abuse kills 0 people per day.
 

True Peach



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  posted on 11/3/2011 at 03:03 PM
quote:
Cannabis abuse kills 0 people per day.

Even better!

 

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Zen Peach



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  posted on 11/4/2011 at 04:33 PM
quote:
Painkiller Abuse Kills 40 People Per Day
11/2/2011 2:12 PM ET

(RTTNews) - Painkiller abuse leads to 40 deaths per day in the U.S., new data from the CDC reveals.

One in 20 U.S. adults has admitted to having abused prescription narcotics in their lives. Vicodin, OxyContin, Opana and methadone are among the most heavily abused.

A major part of the problem is that more people are taking the drugs for a high, rather than for pain purposes. A California study showed that 62 percent of the state's painkiller prescriptions were written by three doctors.

"This stems from a few irresponsible doctors," CDC Director Thomas Frieden said at a news teleconference. "The problem is more from them than from drug pushers on street corners."

by RTT Staff Writer

For comments and feedback: editorial@rttnews.com

http://www.rttnews.com/Content/HealthNews.aspx?Id=1749804&SM=1
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~


Simple solution, have a spiral notepad and a pen, write down what you take and when, that way you don't forget, problem solved! I am not minimizing it, people can forget when they took their pain meds, write it down, know what the maximum daily dosage is that you can take. The maximum amount of Vicodin someone can take in a day is 4,000 mgs. without the potential for respiratory depression. Now if you are taking other things along with that, you can have problems. Also, if you need 4,000 mgs. of Vicodin for pain relief, your Dr. ought to give you something stronger. Once you pass the 3,000 mgs. mark, if your pain isn't controlled, they need to reconsider doing something else for you.



 

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A Peach Supreme



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  posted on 11/4/2011 at 08:41 PM
The problem is ABUSE and often a combination of interactions with other medications and or alcohol. And Gina, I think you mean Tylenol with the 4,000 mg. That used to be the daily max if you did not consume alcohol. It has since (in the last 6 months) been dropped to 3,000 mg. Normal Vicodin dosage is 5-10 mg every 4-6 hours prn pain, sometimes every 8 hours. About 80 mgs. of hydocodone a day is the max, if you need more, you need a different medication or you have some serious issues.
And the FDA is currently and has been for at least 18 months limiting the amout of Tylenol that is combined with pain/cough meds...until eventually the combination drugs will be obsolete. The hospital I work at is now using up all supplies of combination painkillers currently w/ 500 mg of Tylenol and replacing it with 325mg only.

 

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Zen Peach



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  posted on 11/5/2011 at 01:12 PM
quote:
The problem is ABUSE and often a combination of interactions with other medications and or alcohol. And Gina, I think you mean Tylenol with the 4,000 mg. That used to be the daily max if you did not consume alcohol. It has since (in the last 6 months) been dropped to 3,000 mg. Normal Vicodin dosage is 5-10 mg every 4-6 hours prn pain, sometimes every 8 hours. About 80 mgs. of hydocodone a day is the max, if you need more, you need a different medication or you have some serious issues.
And the FDA is currently and has been for at least 18 months limiting the amout of Tylenol that is combined with pain/cough meds...until eventually the combination drugs will be obsolete. The hospital I work at is now using up all supplies of combination painkillers currently w/ 500 mg of Tylenol and replacing it with 325mg only.


No I am not mistaken about the maximum therapeutic Vicodin dosage someone can take for pain relief. It comes in 500, 750 mgs. Normal dosage is anywhere from 500 mgs - 1,000 or 750 - 1,500 mgs every four hours for post surgical pain relief.

For regular pain relief it would be more like 500 - 750 mgs. every 4 hours for pain.

People should NOT with a capital N take Tylenol with Vicodin if they are on high doses, and the addiction symptoms (where if you stop it suddenly that you'd have withdrawal symptoms) occur at the 3 week point. In my prior surgeries, by the second week post op, I'd start tapering down the dose to prevent withdrawal issues.

I understand what you are saying, that there are people who are mis-using or ab-using it to get high, but after a tolerance develops they aren't going to feel high because there is a constant level of it in their blood so there really won't be a dramatic difference in how they feel when they take more. Maybe that is the problem, they are searching for a high that they have not perceived from it, when your blood and binding sites in your brain are saturated, you will not feel any euphoria from taking more of a drug; unless it stronger than that. (Oxycontin or morphine type drugs).

People who abuse medications usually do so because they don't feel good, and they want to feel good. Why they don't feel good varies. Could be chemical imbalances from genetic causes (biological) or could be things that happened in their lives that cause them to respond/react to situations in certain ways. Example, people in abusive households develop different neurological pathways in the brain to cope with the stress of what is going on around them. If your fight or flight centers are excessively stimulated during childhood (bull **** going on all around you, scaring you etc.) your brain develops ways to cope with that which are different than someone growing up in a more harmonius ennvironment.

As you grow older, you don't feel good, you want to feel good, you find that certain substances help you feel good, so you use them, and the potential for ab-using them is there.

The drug ab-use problem is really only a symptom. Why does the person not feel good, that is what has to be solved to solve the problem. Making laws and punishing people is the wrong approach, putting them all on depression medication is not correct either. Have to find out what the problem is to be able to deal with it the right way and the govt. is not the one who should be doing that.

[Edited on 11/5/2011 by gina]

 

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Peach Master



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  posted on 11/5/2011 at 01:46 PM
Don't think pot is completely harmless. It's a hallucinogen and sometimes a very powerful one. While certainly it doesn't pack the punch of pills heroin and coke, it does add to the numbers around hospital ER and psych ward visits. It also has negative consequences for the lungs. Yeah smoke is smoke don't kid yourself. Even those smokeless things rely on gas to ignite the pot and personally I hated the chemical taste. Don't know or care about that methods "safety." Moreover, I know when I ingest it I certainly can't drive and I can drive when I smoke it. And anyway as Gina pointed out it's about your affect too. Pot is drug.
 

Zen Peach



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  posted on 11/5/2011 at 01:49 PM
Yeah, ever heard of a cereal killer ? I recall demoliising an entire box of Cap'n Crrunch after a smoke out.

 

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Peach Master



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  posted on 11/5/2011 at 01:58 PM
BTW, the number of people dying who use painkillers and another substance like alcohol/heroin/coke make the numbers of people dying per day even higher.

Ok this is it from a public health perspective. You can't stop all deaths by car accident, smoking, drug abuse, whatever, but you can reduce the numbers. Dr. Frieden, a rather sharp fellow, thinks the numbers of people dying from opiates in prescription form are too high and he believes states should do a better job in cracking down on doctors who prescribe a lot of painkillers. 3% of one large state's prescribing 62% of the painkiller prescriptions, well there is your proportional target right there.

 

Zen Peach



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  posted on 11/5/2011 at 02:21 PM
The one drug that you always hear positive things about is caffeine. I am a proud java junkie.

 

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