Tag Archives: suicide

Opioids for Chronic Pain Can Increase Life Expectancy

Do Opioids Alone Have an Impact on Life Expectancy?By Lynn Webster, M.D. – Sept 2017

Dr. Webster presents us with examples of two kinds of people having two different motivations for opioid use. For one group, the drug increases their quality and length of life, while for the other, illicit opioids decrease quality and length of life:

  1. one is using carefully measured, quality assured opioids from a pharmacy “as prescribed” as part of a medical treatment plan,
  2. the other is using various amounts of various combinations of various opioid-laced powers acquired from illicit sources.

That right there explains why overdoses are far less likely to happen in legitimate pain patients.  Continue reading

More Veteran Suicides Than Combat Deaths

Time to Bring the Troops Home: More Veterans Committed Suicide Last Decade Than Died in Vietnamby Matt Agorist – Mar 2020

I knew there was a high rate of suicide among veterans since pain medications have been restricted, but I had no idea that those on active duty are also dying from suicide (though I’m not terribly surprised).

It is no secret that the leading cause of death among active duty troops deployed to the Middle East is not combat or accidents, or IEDs — it’s themselves.

The Pentagon’s own statistics show that this is a crisis but it is being ignored.  

This crisis is also happening in the civilian population. No one is making the logical connection between forcing so many Americans to give up effective pain relief and the increasing numbers of suicides.  Continue reading

The Sorrow and Inheritance of Suicide

The Sorrow of Suicide | NIH News in Health – May 2012

Suicide is tragic. It cuts a life short, and it devastates the family, friends and loved ones left behind.

The children of people who die by suicide are more likely to later die by suicide themselves.

This is because we inherit not only our parents’ genes but also the epigenetic markers on those genes, so we can “inherit” a depressed or stressed state or behavior from our parents thru epigenetics and pass our own stress down to our children as well.   Continue reading

Stopping Rx Opioids Associated with Death

Study: Stopping Long-Term Opioid Prescriptions Associated With Veterans’ Deaths – Filter Magazine – By Staff – Mar 2020

For years, pain patient activists have been sounding the alarm about the consequences of abruptly halting people’s access to opioid analgesics…

And we have not just been whining and complaining about our increased “biopsychosocial” pain. The physical and mental impact of experiencing unrelieved, constant, chronic pain can be overwhelming. The danger of forced tapers is an extremely serious and urgent problem, which is increasingly…

…supported by much research.   Continue reading

Pain and Suicide: The Other Side of the Opioid Story

Pain and Suicide: The Other Side of the Opioid Story | Pain Medicine | Oxford AcademicLynn R. Webster, MD – Mar 2014

A former patient whom I’ll call Jack came to me for help after three back operations. He was on disability because of his pain

I treated him for about four years, struggling all the while to get his insurance to cover his therapies. I tried to get him to see a psychologist, but his insurance would not pay for the service.

He was on what most physicians today would term a high dose of opioids and other medications. I wasn’t convinced that the higher dose was any more effective than a lower dose. He was mostly inactive and reported little improvement in pain or function while on his medication.    Continue reading

Critical link between pain intensity and suicide

VA study uncovers critical link between pain intensity and suicide attempts   Oct 2019

Here’s the earthshattering conclusion of a new study:

New study finds pain intensity is a telling risk factor for suicide!

Apparently, this is BIG news for the medical community. They’ve never found such results before – probably because no one has studied it.

It saddens me that most people still don’t understand how devastating chronic pain becomes, how it upends lives and sometimes cuts them short.  Continue reading

Want To Reduce Suicides? Follow The Data

Want To Reduce Suicides? Follow The Data — To Medical Offices, Motels And Even Animal Shelters | Kaiser Health NewsBy Maureen O’HaganSep 2019

This article explores how suicides are identified and also scrutinizes data to find indicators that someone is getting close to acting.

On Kimberly Repp’s office wall is a sign in Latin: Hic locus est ubi mors gaudet succurrere vitae. This is a place where the dead delight in helping the living.

For medical examiners, it’s a mission. Their job is to investigate deaths and learn from them, for the benefit of us all. Repp, however, isn’t a medical examiner; she’s a Ph.D. microbiologist.   Continue reading

Military Sees Frustrating Trend as Suicides Spike

Military Sees Frustrating Trend as Suicides SpikeBy Lolita C. Baldor – Sep 2019

Military suicides have surged to a record high among active duty troops, continuing a deadly trend that Pentagon officials say is frustrating and they are struggling to counter.

The difficulties involved in identifying service members with possible problems and finding ways to prevent suicides were underscored earlier this month when the Navy reported that three crew members who served on the USS George H.W. Bush took their own lives within a week.

The number of suicides across the military increased from 511 in 2017 to 541 in 2018.

“Our numbers are not moving in the right direction,” said Elizabeth Van Winkle, director of the Pentagon’s office of force resiliency. She said that most of the military rates are comparable to civilians, but added, “that’s hardly comforting.”

Military and defense leaders expressed dismay and a resolve to do more to increase resilience in the force, train service members how to handle stress better and encourage troops to seek help when they need it.

Van Winkle said the military is also looking at increasing efforts to train troops on the safe storage of firearms and medication.

…recognizing service members who may be struggling or at risk of taking their own lives is very difficult, and that sometimes suicide is a sudden, impulsive decision with little warning. They said it’s difficult to identify reasons for suicide because there are so many stresses that could contribute.

They also acknowledged that service members are reluctant to come forward and seek help, because they worry that it could affect promotions or security clearances

This year for the first time, the Pentagon included statistics for suicides by military spouses and dependents. Van Winkle said the most recent numbers available were for 2017, but officials are working to get better at collecting family data.

According to the report, there were 186 families that had suicides — 123 were spouses and 63 were dependents between the ages of 12 and 23.

Suicide a Major Part of Opioid Crisis

Suicide Deaths Are a Major Component of the Opioid Crisis that Must Be Addressed | Nora’s Blog, NIDA – Sep 2019

September is National Suicide Prevention Awareness Month. In observance, our two institutes, the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) and National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), are taking this opportunity to highlight a dimension of the opioid crisis that receives too little attention—the links between opioid use, opioid use disorder (OUD), and suicide.

They forgot an important one: unbearable pain when opioids are withheld.

the opioid overdose epidemic is not limited to people with opioid addiction who accidentally take too much of a pain reliever or unknowingly inject a tainted heroin product. Concealed in the alarming number of overdose deaths is a significant number of people who have decided to take their own life.  Continue reading

Pain Awareness IS Suicide Prevention

Coincidentally, the month of September is “Pain Awareness Month” and its 2nd week is also “Suicide Prevention Week”.  I believe pain awareness *is* suicide prevention, so here is my yearly post about the unintended serendipity of these two awareness campaigns going on at the same time.

By now we have direct evidence that a lack of pain awareness, as demonstrated by all the politicians and healthcare “experts” enshrining the CDC “guideline” prescription opioid restrictions as law, is leading to suicides of patients with uncontrolled pain.

Can the connection become any more obvious?  Continue reading