The Press: Incorrect Medical Information, Dire Consequences! | American Council on Science and Health –By Wolfgang Vogel — Oct 2019
Reporters and editors have the duty to inform the public about current events. In fulfilling this duty, every journalist must follow the journalistic code of ethics; reports must be based on proven facts or when personal opinions are used they must be clearly be labeled as such.
Sometimes we don’t even realize the difference between something we have knowledge of and something we only believe. More than once in my life, things I thought I “knew” turned out to be more assumptions or opinions rather than facts. Continue reading
Study Finds Only 1.3% of Overdose Victims Had Opioid Prescription — Pain News Network – By Pat Anson – Oct 2019
It’s long been a popular belief that prescription opioids fueled the nation’s opioid crisis and play a major role in overdose deaths. The CDC’s 2016 opioid guideline says as much.
But a new study by researchers in Massachusetts has turned that theory on its head. Prescription opioids are not usually involved overdoses.
And even when they are, the overdose victim rarely has an active prescription for them – meaning the medications were diverted, stolen or bought on the street. Continue reading
The Doctor–Patient Relationship, as Defined by Language – by Henry Buchwald, MD, PhD – Sep 2019
A lexicon or thesaurus of ambiguous, euphemistic language is probably required to understand the Orwellian (George Orwell, born Erick Arthur Blair; author of “1984,” published 1949) “Newspeak” that is engulfing our profession.
The administocracy (see below) of health care has introduced many new terms into our medical vocabulary, and as Orwell fully appreciated, words are transformative precursors of reality.
You’re not in pain, you’re just “experiencing discomfort”. Continue reading
Opinion | Americans Need Generic Drugs. But Can They Trust Them? – NY Times – By May 2019
Technicians used initial hidden tests to get preliminary results, which then guided them as they tinkered with the test settings.
Then they retested in the plant’s official system to get the desired results showing that the drugs fell within specifications. Those drugs with altered test results could then be released to patients.
During his 27 months in India, of the 38 drug plants he inspected, Mr. Baker found fraudulent or deceptive data in 29 of them. Continue reading
‘Business decision’: Former DEA official works for opioid lawyers but set standards for how many pills were made – By John O’Brien | Sep 3, 2019
The DEA knew more about what quantities of opioids went where than anyone else, so I’m baffled why they didn’t stop the excessive orders that everyone is complaining about now.
Asked what would’ve happened if a pharmaceutical distributor wanted advice on whether a large order of opioids was suspicious, the man in charge of federal regulation of those pills for 10 years said he wouldn’t have helped.
Instead, Joe Rannazzisi, who set always-increasing opioid quotas for theindustry while he headed a Drug Enforcement Agency department from 2005-15, said the company would be left on its own to figure it out. Continue reading
Opinion | Fear, Loathing and Fentanyl Exposure – https://www.nytimes.com/ By The Editorial Board – April 4, 2019
The New York Times has published many articles about the “opioid crisis” that follow the usual unchecked assumptions around opioids, so I’m glad this opinion piece by the “top guns” of the Times finally explains the problems posed by fentanyl: it’s super potent, but not by accidental skin exposure or “breathing fumes”.
As baseless public health scares go, the one about police officers and nurses purportedly overdosing from passive fentanyl exposure should have been easy to dispel.
Emergency workers across the country have reported dozens of such incidents in recent years, but their symptoms are often inconsistent with opioid poisoning. Continue reading
The March Toward a Pre-Modern Approach to the Treatment of Pain Continues, Undeterred by Science – By Jeffrey A. Singer – Aug 2019
It seems that no amount of data-driven information can get policymakers to reconsider the hysteria-driven pain prescription policies they continue to put in place.
For all human beings, data is far less stimulating than hysteria. That’s why movements, like the anti-opioid zealotry, use scare tactics to motivate and mobilize the populace.
I can understand lay politicians and members of the press misconstruing addiction and dependency, but there is no excuse when doctors make that error.
I used to believe that doctors knew far more about my body and its functions than I did, but what I’ve seen during this “opioid” crisis has disabused me of that quaint notion. Continue reading
Opioids: Bad Science, Bad Policy, Bad Outcomes – by Henry I. Miller and Josh Bloom – 2019
As is so often the case nowadays, this article does not show what date it was published. This is clearly intended to confuse the reader about whether it’s a “current” article or from much older archives.
I can only estimate the date of publication by what other studies it references. In this case, it refers to a JAMA article from Feb 2019, so it must be later than that.
There’s an old joke about the drunk who’s hunting for his lost keys under the lamppost, not because he thinks they’re there, but because the light is good. Well, that’s what the feds and state governments are doing to try to quell the epidemic of opioid addiction and overdoses. Continue reading
Data From Germany Provide More Reasons For Policy to Shift From Prescription Pills to Harm Reduction – Cato.org – By Jeffrey A. Singer – Aug 2019
In February of this year, I co-authored a paper in the Journal of Pain Research explaining why there is no correlation between the amount of opioids prescribed and the incidence of non-medical use or prescription pain-reliever use disorder.
See my post on this paper: Non-medical opioid users were not pain patients
Now researchers in Germany have provided more evidence to pour cold water on the idea of any relationship between the volume of opioid prescribing and the incidence of opioid use disorder. Continue reading