KiwiPi's post about
the stigma currently surrounding Oxycontin got me to thinking and I did not want to totally hijack that thread with my little rant.
Drug abuse is a serious problem regardless if we are talking illegal drugs or prescript
ion medications, but it is the media attention to any specific problem that really seems to place the truly dark cloud over that drug.
When it comes to prescript
ion drugs, as I pointed out in the other topic, it was not that long ago Vicodin was the evil prescript
ion med of choice villianized by the media thanks in no small part to the show House and before that there was a fairly wide net cast over all prescript
ion narcotics and the dangers of addiction, their abuse and so on.
Many things really irk me about
all this but one of my biggest irritations is the attitude within the medical community and how it seems to be influenced more by the media's attention than it is by scientific study and medical fact.
I wonder why is it with all of these news stories and interviews with doctors that no one is willing to get up and say "Hey!! Hold on a minute. It is not the drug that is the problem. A huge percentage of these people addicted to these drugs are people who have really swapped one addiction for another, or are people who have been under the care of doctors who are totally irresponsible. People who truly need these medications to control pain and improve the quality of their lives rarely if ever develop an addiction to pain medication. There have been quite a few studies done on this and they all support it. Yes these real pain patients may develop a physical dependency on these medicines that is a lot different than developing an addiction to it and a lot easier to deal with if and when the time comes they no longer need the pain medication." Also why is it that no one seems willing to stand up before the various government hearings and say the same thing?
All of this brings to mind what my mother went through the last month of her life before she died from cancer. Her PCP as well as the oncologist who was treating her were reluctant to prescribe her any strong narcotics. All they wanted to give her, even on her death bed in the hospital was darvocet because they feared her becoming addicted.
It wasn't until the chief oncologist came in to check on her and seen how much pain she was in did she finally get the pain medicine she needed to be relatively comfortable the last 3 days of her life.