CDC Guideline Assumptions are Insult to Pain Patients

As a pain patient with over 20 years of successful opioid treatment experience, I’m offended by all these pain guidelines that assume I am stupid and lazy (if my pain is even real in the first place) and that my doctor is ignorant and negligent.

I’m insulted by all their extremely negative assumptions and appalled that they broadcast such a devastating stereotype of pain patients. Coming from the central government these guidelines stigmatize patients more powerfully than anything I’ve seen so far.

They paint pain patients as lying, lazy, ignorant, whining scammers, assuming the very worst of human motives and behavior. This reminds me of the psychological truth that we are generally most bothered by others when they reflect our own shortcomings.  

This leads me to the inference that the rule-makers themselves are actually the lying, lazy, ignorant scammers they accuse pain patients of being.

The lies are exhibited in the deliberately flawed statistics they used, the laziness is evident in their refusal to work on the real problem, which is addiction, ignorance is obvious in their many flawed assumptions (that they believe are facts), and the scam is that they are trying to make people desperate enough to submit to extremely profitable interventional surgeries or push them into extremely profitable addiction recovery programs.

The people who are fabricating all these new rules about opioids assume I don’t exercise (and probably never have), that I’m totally out of shape, that I’m completely unaware of nutrition and eat nothing but junk food.

They assume I went whining to my doctor with some annoying aches and pains (which I mainly brought upon myself), upon which my doctor just whipped out a prescription pad and prescribed huge amounts of opioids, for which I keep getting refills even though I haven’t been examined in years.

Why do the guideline writers assume that opioids are one of the first pain management methods prescribed by doctors and used by patients?

They assume I didn’t already spend thousands of dollars to try multiple ineffective “alternative” medicine treatments (which also have no evidence for long-term effectiveness), that I didn’t try multiple rounds of physical therapy.

They assume I never tried non-opioid medications, that I never almost lost my sanity taking the recommended antidepressant (Cymbalta), that I didn’t almost fall down with dizziness from the recommended anti-epileptic (Lyrica), that I didn’t buy and consume huge bottles of ibuprofen and acetaminophen tablets.

And they insult me even further by claiming I’m so unaware that I’m “thinking myself into pain”.

They assume I haven’t already for years applied mental techniques to reduce my pain perceptions, that I haven’t been scouring the psychological literature for decades seeking mental pain remedies and that I haven’t tried all kinds of “visualizations” and meditations.

They assume I’m catastrophizing, magnifying my negative thoughts, dwelling on my pain, and that I need Cognitive Behavior Therapy to straighten out all my “not really true” negative or fearful thoughts.

But what if anticipating catastrophic pain and fatigue is not just a negative belief, but an appropriate life concern?

The guideline writers never consider the “on the ground” realities–physical, emotional, social, financial–of living in this country with permanent and constant pain.

They assume I’m just a dumb, passive and exceedingly annoying pain patient, someone who doesn’t know anything about their body and doesn’t want to know, someone just complaining and waiting to be fixed by a magic pill.

They assume I haven’t suffered enough, am not desperate enough to do anything and everything in my power that has even a tiny chance of easing my pain.

Opioids are the last pain treatment I tried,
Opioids are the only pain treatment that works.*

*In my case and for many others, but not all.

5 thoughts on “CDC Guideline Assumptions are Insult to Pain Patients

  1. Doc Anonymous

    Well said and RIGHT ON!!!!
    It is a frightening day when so much of the Federal Government’s power and money are being used to wrongfully stigmatize a whole class of people!!! The Supreme Court (Paul v. Davis, has decided that it is not unconstitutional for the government to stigmatize peoples’ reputations alone, but if there is collateral damage, then it is unconstitutional for the government to impose that stigmatization. It seems to me that the CDC with its guidelines has invoked stigmatization of the class of people disabled by chronic pain (As Zyp Czyk has so ably described!). But that stigmatization has gone beyond simple damage to reputation and imposes a reign of fear, increased pain and even expatriation of pain patients from the ability to participate equally in their own medical care. In large part due to the stigmatization, pain patients are viewed by most doctors as “difficult patients” or undesirable patients to say the least.

    Someday chronic pain patients will win their day in court and the CDC and its chronies will be deemed guilty of violating the human, civil, and Constitutional rights of those suffering chronic pain.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Zyp Czyk Post author

      I almost didn’t publish this because I thought it was too extreme, but the opiophobes have pushed this debate to ridiculous extremes from the beginning. They let no lack of logic or evidence stand in their way.

      Your supportive response makes me feel a little better about posting this.


  2. Jakay

    This is just what I wanted to say, but didn’t know how.
    I’ve had chronic pain for over 30 years, and I’m intelligent and proactive. I also have a very good doctor, who looks after me. Government interference in a doctor’s office is an abrogation of a patient’s right to care.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Ingrid

    So well said and TRUE!!
    Not too extreme, and yes, the propaganda machine is working overtime. It is in the theater of the absurd realm now ..
    Thank you for all you do and say!!!

    Liked by 1 person


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