Figures Lie and Liars Figure – Why the Demographics of the So-Called “Prescription Opioid Crisis” Don’t Work

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Dr Richard Lawhern was kind enough to share his November 17, 2017 National Pain report post, Figures Lie and Liars Figure with our paindr blog audience. Dr Lawhern’s post appears below with a cross-link to the original post.  Thank you Dr. Lawhern for this insightful piece!

Anybody who reads a newspaper or watches evening news has heard the screaming headlines:  “60,000 Drug Overdose Deaths” (or similar numbers).  When reporters seek maximum sensationalism, we hear deaths by overdose summed over 10 years or compared to casualties in the Vietnam War.  500,000 drug deaths is a much more impressive number — even though it’s mostly hype.

Unfortunately for all of us – and for US public policy makers — such numbers misrepresent more than they illuminate [Ref 1].  Public policy concerning opioid addiction which is based on such inflated numbers will inevitably fail spectacularly, just as the “War on Drugs” did in the 1980s.

Continue reading at National Pain Report Post HERE

After reading Dr. Lawhern’s post on National Pain Report, feel free to comment here.

 

4 thoughts on “Figures Lie and Liars Figure – Why the Demographics of the So-Called “Prescription Opioid Crisis” Don’t Work

  1. This so called Opoid epidemic form its start in the bord room of the D E A. With rescheduling of hydrocodone in 2016 and what was once called an non-narcotic , Tramadol now is magically a narcotic. Cutting people off narcotics is doing more more harm than good. Now you can’t get any type of pain relief even for legitimate pain. Doctors just don’t want the DEA lookin gets over their logs.

  2. Yes, the numbers are inflated!! The statistics that they are using to justify this “epidemic” include completely illegal drugs including heroin!! So why are the legislators feel that they have to use inflated numbers? Why should the government get involved in making decisions on my behalf and on the behalf of my doctor? Does it make sense that this comes in the wake of legalizing marijuana in many states?

    Looking at the real data, most patients do not abuse!! So, why let people suffer when we can prevent suffering?

    Simply providing education so that an informed decision can be made on an individual basis would be the best solution. Therefore, doctor/patient should be given the autonomy to determine the best treatment.

    When they pass legislation that includes limitations or completely eliminate the use of opioids: Who is going to track how many suicides result from people not being able to cope with living in pain? Who is going to track all those who seek illegal drugs to obtain pain relief?

    Since it does not take in account the individual and their individual circumstances, the legislator’s have no business legislating medical care and treatment protocols. The involvement of legislators in medical care is just another infringement of our individual rights.

  3. I AM NOT A DOCTOR. NEITHER IS MY 5 TIMES CANCER SURVIVING WIFE.
    GUESS WHAT?? WE ARE THE PEOPLE IN PAIN DUE TO DISEASE AND INJURY. WE FOLLOW THE DIRECTIONS AND USE OUR PAIN MEDS AS PRESCRIBED. JUST LIKE MANY OTHER “VICTIMS” OF THIS NEW OPIOID CRUSADE.
    YES. I UNDERSTAND THAT THERE ARE ADDICTS ABUSING THIS MEDICATION, HOWEVER, I DO NOT UNDERSTAND WHY THE PEOPLE WHO DO NOT ABUSE THEM ARE BEING PERSECUTED!!
    I AM 50 YEARS OLD. MY WIFE IS 60. SHE HAS CANCER. I WAS HIT AND PINNED BETWEEN 2 CARS BREAKING MY LEG AND CRUSHING MY NERVES. I AM NOT YOUNG ENOUGH TO HEAL QUICKLY AND NEITHER IS MY WIFE.
    WHEN IN PAIN I CAN NOT SLEEP, I HAVE A HARD TIME FOCUSING ON MY WORK, AND CAN BARELY WALK. YET THE NEW PAIN PROGRAM SAYS IT’S OK TO HURT AS LONG AS YOU DO NOT TAKE OPIOIDS.
    TO ME IT FEELS LIKE THE LOWEST FORM OF TORTURE TO USE THE LEGAL SYSTEM TO ATTACK THE ELDERLY IN THIS WAY. WHY SHOULD WE have TO SUFFER!!
    SORRY IF I AM NOT A DOCTOR “practicing” MEDICINE!!!
    I AM JUST THE PATIENT OLD ENOUGH TO KNOW WHAT IS WRONG WITH MYSELF.

    ON A SIDE NOTE. . . MY GRANDSON IS ‘practicing” GUITAR. I AM SURE HE WILL BE GOOD SOME DAY. . . BUT YOU STILL HAVE TO KEEP PRACTICING TO BE GOOD. (Hopefully at your own expense and not others)

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