Prescriptions for chronic pain contributing to opioid epidemic
The opioid epidemic is considered the most unrelenting drug crisis in United States history.
In 2016, roughly 64,000 people were killed by drug overdoses, including from prescription opioid painkillers and heroin.
Killing more people than guns or car accidents, and doing so at a pace faster than the H.I.V. epidemic did at its peak.
This puts doctors in a predicament making them very leary about prescribing the drugs in the first place
Many medical associations now offer doctors training about opioids and chronic pain, urging them first to use other remedies: physical therapy, acupuncture, anti-inflammatories, antidepressants
Doctors should be careful not to assure patients that they will be “pain-free.” Instead, they should talk about setting realistic goals while living with pain. Can they work? Walk? Sleep?
Sara Siavoshi, DO, is a board-certified neurologist who treats headaches, migraines, traumatic brain injury and general neurological conditions. She performs procedures such as Botox injections, nerve blocks and trigger point injections. In addition, her research interests include migraines and facial pain.