Opioid medication discontinuation and risk of adverse opioid-related health care events. – PubMed – J Subst Abuse Treat. 2019 Aug
Between 2012 and 2017, the United States dramatically reduced opioid prescribing rates.
While this may be appropriate given the opioid epidemic, there has been little research to guide the clinical practice of discontinuing patients from opioid medications and opioid death rates have continued to increase.
These forced tapers have been a horrible experiment on thousands of people, enacted without any knowledge of what the outcome might be. Continue reading
Association Between Peripheral Neuropathy and Exposure to Oral Fluoroquinolone or Amoxicillin-Clavulanate Therapy | Clinical Pharmacy and Pharmacology | JAMA Neurology – April 2019
I’m starting to believe that antibiotics affect far more of our bodies than we ever imagined. We already know about the potential tendon ruptures, but it seems we’re discovering more significant side-effects over time.
Findings This nested case-control study of 5357 incident peripheral neuropathy cases and 17 285 matched controls showed that current use of systemic fluoroquinolone antibiotics increased the risk of peripheral neuropathy by 47%, causing an additional 2.4 cases per 10 000 patients per year of current use.
Risk appeared to be greater with cumulative exposure, among men, and among those older than 60 years of age but was not significantly associated with amoxicillin-clavulanate. Continue reading
Fluoroquinolones Overprescribed Despite Dangers – Matt McMillen – Feb 2019
This is the strongest warning I’ve seen about these common antibiotics and it makes me wonder why they don’t mention it to us when the drugs are prescribed.
In 2006, Rachel Brummert developed a sinus infection, and her doctor prescribed Levaquin, one of a class of powerful antibiotics called fluoroquinolones.
Shortly after she began taking the drug, she went on an errand. While crossing a parking lot, her Achilles tendon ruptured. Her foot went limp. The agony felt unbearable. Continue reading
8 things we now know about the toxicity of gadolinium to the brain – The Neurology Lounge – May 26, 2018 – Ibrahim Imam
When it comes to imaging the nervous system, nothing but an MRI will do for the fastidious neurologist.
CT has its uses, such as in detecting acute intracranial bleeding, but it lacks the sophistication to detect or differentiate between less glaring abnormalities. It also comes with a hefty radiation dose.
MRI on the other hand, relying on powerful magnetic fields, is a ‘cleaner’ technology. Continue reading
Antiepileptic drugs increase risk of Alzheimer’s and dementia – Science Daily – April 2018 – University of Eastern Finland
The use of [some] antiepileptic drugs is associated with an increased risk of Alzheimer’s disease and dementia, according to a new study from the University of Eastern Finland and the German Center for Neurodegenerative Diseases, DZNE.
Continuous use of antiepileptic drugs for a period exceeding one year was associated with a 15 percent increased risk of Alzheimer’s disease in the Finnish dataset, and with a 30 percent increased risk of dementia in the German dataset.
This is the class of drugs we are being coerced to take instead of opioids despite the fact that opioids have far fewer side effects. Continue reading
Epidural Steroid Injections Associated With Decreased Bone Mineral Density, Increased Risk for Vertebral Fracture – Jessica Martin – January 25, 2018
Another reason to avoid epidural injections for pain:
In this systematic review and critical literature appraisal, researchers evaluated 8 studies (n=7233) that reported on the effects of epidural steroid injections on bone mineral density, osteoporosis, vertebral fracture, or osteopenia.
Across all studies, mean changes in bone mineral density ranged from 0.06% to 1.25% in the lumbar spine and from −2.87% to 0.45% in the femoral neck. Continue reading
Drug Safety Communication on Gadolinium Contrast Agents | Drug Topics – December 20, 2017
The FDA has issued a drug safety communication about gadolinium-based contrast agents used in MRIs. It is requiring a new class warning and other safety measures for these products.
This is not the first time this issue has arisen:
Persistent Postsurgical Pain – Practical Pain Management
Surgery is often counterproductive for chronic pain, so beware!
More than 45 million surgical procedures are performed in the United States each year. It has been estimated that acute postoperative pain will develop into persistent postoperative pain (PPP) in 10% to 50% of individuals after common operations.
Since chronic pain can be severe in up to 10% of these patients, PPP represents a major clinical problem—affecting at least 450,000 people each year. Continue reading
The antibiotic course has had its day | The BMJ – July 2017
With little evidence that failing to complete a prescribed antibiotic course contributes to antibiotic resistance, it’s time for policy makers, educators, and doctors to drop this message, argue Martin Llewelyn and colleagues.
Antibiotics are vital to modern medicine and antibiotic resistance is a global, urgent threat to human health. The relation between antibiotic exposure and antibiotic resistance is unambiguous both at the population level and in individual patients.
However, the idea that stopping antibiotic treatment early encourages antibiotic resistance is not supported by evidence, while taking antibiotics for longer than necessary increases the risk of resistance. Continue reading
Common heartburn drugs tied to higher risk of death – July 2017 – By Catharine Paddock PhD
A team of researchers from Washington University have found that a person’s risk of premature death rises with long-term use of PPIs.
Interfering with our body’s biologic functions, like proton pump inhibitors do, always seems risky to me.
Because we cannot isolate the changes we make in one part of the system from the rest of it, there will always be unintended consequences; only time will tell if they are harmful or beneficial, but they will rarely be inconsequential.