Opioid Malfeasance At The CDC

Opioid Malfeasance At The CDC- Guess Who Is Getting Hurt? | American Council on Science and Health  By Josh Bloom — December 5, 2016

The CDC left us with a huge mess last year with its Guidelines for prescription of opioid medications to adult non-cancer chronic pain patients.

But, if you look deeper, it wasn’t a simple mess.

It would seem that the agency’s conclusions, supposedly based on sound studies, were decided in advance and preordained. This would then add malfeasance to the stupidity that they have already displayed in spades.

Red Lawhern explains.  

In recent months, a rising chorus of complaints has sounded on the March 2016 CDC Guidelines for prescription of opioid medications to adult non-cancer chronic pain patients.

As a wise writer once informed us, “you can get data to say almost anything if you torture them for long enough”.  This is precisely what the CDC has done.

Now comes yet another paper in the November 2016 issue of Pain Medicine which goes even further, to demonstrate what may be deliberate malfeasance and bias.  The work is titled “Durations of Opioid, Nonopioid Drug, and Behavioral Clinical Trials for Chronic Pain: Adequate or inadequate?”

The finding of this independent assessment is that CDC writers applied a criterion for weeding out studies of opioid effectiveness that they did not apply to non-opioid and behavioral treatments which they recommended in preference to opioids.

CDC eliminated all studies of opioids which lasted less than a year, but failed to apply the same criterion to non-opioid therapies.

the Guidelines seem designed to deliberately confuse an artificially created “absence of proof” for opioid effectiveness, with “proof of absence” for effectiveness.

It appears that the CDC set out to discredit the effectiveness of opioids in long term use — regardless of the available evidence — using a scientifically invalid process called “cherry picking.”

The earlier systematic review of the effectiveness and efficacy of opioids was based upon the best available evidence, and identified dozens of clinical trials and systematic reviews of this topic

earlier reviews concluded that selected, carefully monitored patients might benefit from such therapy [opioid therapy].

However, this conclusion was totally absent from the 2016 guidelines.

In other words, the writers of the CDC standards appear to have biased their report to support a political agenda.

It is time for the CDC to withdraw a fallacious opioid treatment standard which is causing great harm, and to start the project over.

I’m very proud to have my own post referenced as a source for the article:

CDC Manipulated Data to Deceive” – by Zyp Cyk, in “EDS Info (Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome)”, quoting at length from “Durations of Opioid, Nonopioid Drug and Behavioral Clinical trials for Chronic Pain” 



8 thoughts on “Opioid Malfeasance At The CDC

  1. Kathy C

    Good Heavens!
    They have undermined “Science,” it is now only about perception. They cherry picked the Science, then pointed to he “Lack of evidence” as a “fact”. In disparate Mediums from the New York Times, coverage of the “Rust Belt, and Appalachia, the same refrain, the horror of opiods.” They painted the picture of the “White Trash, Trailer Dweller” addicted to opiods. Each “so called “journalist” repeating the same narrative. These “News Articles” were even more emotional when they put grieving parents, and small children in them. They never bothered to go any deeper to see the underlying malaise, of the failed system. They did not have to.
    The false narrative even infiltrated Public Television and NPR. Public television just had their Annual Fundraising Drive, For a “Donation” there is an “Exercise” Video by a former Ballet dancer. In her Promotion of her “Pain Cure” she claims that “2 million Americans are Addicted to opiates”. The use of shocking numbers and sensational claims has long been the staple of Info-commercials. On Cable TV they have a number of “Cures.” All day long they peddle, back braces, and devices, paid for by Medicare. Since Medicare covers these things, the price is 10 times what is would cost retail. They peddle “Vitamins,” Omega 3 Elixirs”, exercise machines, gadgets, and DVDs. They are all purported to “cure’ pain. These are interposed with Advertisements for dubious “Addiction Treatment.”
    Of course “Exercise” usually doesn’t hurt, and it is healthy, in most cases. This “Fact” inserted into unfounded and misleading statements is a multi billion dollar business. There is no one keeping track of the injuries, or the failures, they leave out the people that are beyond exercise. They leave out he Injuries that occur during Exercise. They also leave out the fact that many people who get injured, or have pain conditions work too many hours to exercise, The Jobs that do major wear and tear on the body, that leave many people in pain, are no longer an issue. Those blue collar “rust belt types” are now “Drug Addicts” even though they were injured in a Mining job or other Physical Labor. They just pushed through it, “Hard work” is what made “America Great.” They didn’t have the luxury of a trip to the Spa, a day off, or even good Medical Attention. The Industry they worked in would rather avoid paying for healthcare or time off. If they had Workman’s Compensation, the Lawyers would have figured out they could save a lot of money postponing medical Care or Diagnosis of a painful Injury. The Opiod Epidemic was a great Narrative. It at once ensured the profits of a number of Industries. The Insurance Industry, would rather not pay for On the Job Injuries, or even Genetic Conditions. They could postpone or deny care, this was also beneficial for the Medical Industry, no more liability. They could misdiagnose painful injuries, for the patients own good now, since treating pain could involve Opiods. They are actually doing them a favor, better to be crippled of life, than to be a drug addict.

    In the case of that Ballet Dancer, I think of the Ballet dancers and other Athletes, that dieted, to make weight, leading to bone loss, and then in some cases, Osteoporosis that is crippling. Some of them are incapable of “Exercising’, their bones are too fragile.” I think of the 80 year old lady that was sent home form the E.R with Tylenol. She reached for something in the kitchen and broke a vertebrae. She was in agony of months until her daughter insisted the do something. An injection of cement into the shattered vertebrae, brought her a lot of relief. The Procedure was postponed because if they diagnosed it, it could lead to addiction.

    This is all anecdotal, but there is no one keeping track of these incidents. There is no Federal Agency following the Data. They don’t keep track of how many times care is denied or postponed. The deaths are not even counted. The different reporting requirements make it easy to manipulate data,and get better reviews. We thought that the Internet and computers would have made all of this more efficient, they do collect massive amounts of Data. They don’t collect the Data, that the Industries don’t like. This is a massive Bait and Switch. We no longer have a “Free Press.” The only coverage at all of Healthcare, is in Public Relations Releases and Advertising. Few so called “Journalists” even ask questions anymore, afraid for their Careers, or unable to question, they only pass along and approved corporate message. Doctors and other Providers never stray from the Corporate Message, it would mean the end of their career or credibility.

    Tana Ganeva at Alternet writes:
    Writing at Jacobin, Dan O’Sullivan noted that when Democrats and the media sneer at Rust Belt Americans, they’re “either ignoring or laughing at the evisceration of people by drug addiction, treatable health problems, overwork, malnutrition, foreclosure, infant mortality, slum housing, usurious loans — the sundry complications of poverty. The list is endless, and each bullet signifies another humiliation, another compromise, another deadening.”

    With the heroin epidemic eating up so much media time, it makes sense that addiction is highlighted as yet another stressor on these communities. But what about the policing of drugs? On the Washington Post’s Watch blog, I point out that panic over meth in the 1990s and early aughts led to a law enforcement crackdown with some parallels to the policing of crack in the ’80s, when users and dealers were aggressively prosecuted and child protective agencies ripped families apart. There are important differences, of course, including race—meth is a drug that has traditionally been associated with white and Hispanic people, while crack in the ’80s was primarily seen as a drug used by black people in cities.

    Even the “National Pain Report” is in on the action. A Pharma endorsement in the guise of an “Inspirational Feel Good Story.” Let the shaming begin, because this Doctor with Migraines ran a Marathon. These are the kind of “Articles” that endorse a False Narrative and Market Pharmaceuticals, since the lines are now blurred. They also contain Legal Disclaimers so they can make the statements without Liability, just like the Pharma Commercial..


    Liked by 1 person

  2. david becker

    I think Red and Josh Bloom and Zyp have performed a great services for the pain community by revealing the immorality of the CDC guidelines and the truth behing the immorality. The question now is who will address the immorality andwhat will be done to address the immorality.
    I had said previusly that sausages are made with more humanity then the CDC guidelines and it was only too clear the evidence used to justify such was specious. But i also know that Congress doesnt care how shoddy the evidence is for the guidelines. They dont care for rational decision making They saw an opportunity during an election year to look good to those constituents who were concerned about addiction and used people in pain as scapegoats. We know the CDC connection to PROP and PROP to addiction centers. IN NYS, similarly, the NYS Senate had an opioid task force and cherry picked directors of addiction centers who almost unanaimusly said the answer for addiction was more money for addiction centers. Not a single one called for better addiction treatment.
    As the hysteria over addiction wanes- as the spell of witches dissolves- coler heada may prevail. It is up to dedicated and determined individuals to point out the facts about opioids addiction and pain-when the time is right-that will be some time next year.
    Hopefully some in the pain community realize now- that government and the health care industry is not their friend- and that they have to be their own best advocates.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Victoria Shepard

    Hi, some time ago you posted a link on inspire.com to some exercises for lower back pain. They worked really well for me. Now I can’t find the link. Can you send it to me. Thank you


  4. Victoria Shepard

    Hi, on inspire.com some time ago, you posted a link to some very gentle lower back exercises. I was wondering if you could send that link to me again. Thank you.



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