Chronic Pain and the Risk of Suicide | Psychology Today – Judy Foreman – A Nation in Pain – November 2015
This fall’s grim report about rising suicide and overall death rates among white, middle-aged Americans contains a slim silver lining. Here it is:
The new analysis by two Princeton economists, Anne Case and Angus Deaton, suggests that chronic pain — and the opioids used to treat it — may be a key driver of the rising deaths.
While the “noisy” opioid epidemic has garnered near-daily headlines across the country for several years now, the equally horrible but silent epidemic of chronic pain has not yet broken through into the nation’s consciousness. Continue reading
Perhaps you thought the warnings about abandoned pain patients committing suicide were hyperbole, but this phenomenon is very real:
Partial List of Suicides, as of 9–10-17 , revised, related I personally believe, to CDC and “Physicians for Responsible Opioid Prescribing” who suggest responsible prescribing is no prescribing or reductions in prescribing pain medicines in 25 million non addicted medical patients in daily pain, all for a good reason they say, to prevent heroin addiction and death from heroin overdose. You decide.
I’ve only picked out a few from this long, sad list of patients who could not tolerate their painful lives without effective opioid relief. Continue reading
How Chronic Pain Killed My Husband — Pain News Network – September 06, 2017 – By Meredith Lawrence, Guest Columnist
Jay’s next doctor’s appointment was scheduled for March 2, and we knew they were going to decrease his medications again.
The last thing the doctor said to us will stick with me forever. He said, “My patient’s quality of life is not worth losing my practice over.”
I want people to understand that when chronic pain runs your life, eventually you just want the pain to stop.
The night before, he woke me up to tell me it was time. I knew what that meant, but I tried to be strong for his sake. We talked all night long about what it meant, and how it should be. It was the saddest, strangest, longest night of my life.
I can’t get this line out of my mind. The great love Meredith and Jay had for each other is evident throughout this exceptional story.
Precision medicine opens the door to scientific wellness preventive approaches to suicide | EurekAlert! Science News | Public Release: 15-Aug-2017
Researchers have developed a more precise way of diagnosing suicide risk, by developing blood tests that work in everybody, as well as more personalized blood tests for different subtypes of suicidality that they have newly identified, and for different psychiatric high-risk groups.
Suicide strikes people in all walks of life. We believe such tragedies can be averted.
This landmark larger study breaks new ground, as well as reproduces in larger numbers of individuals some of our earlier findings,” said Dr. Niculescu. Continue reading
People Who Commit Suicide Have Abnormal Chromosomes, Mitochondria | American Council on Science and Health – By Alex Berezow — June 14, 2017
Views toward suicide have changed in recent decades. Once largely perceived as a selfish act and a “permanent solution to a temporary problem,” society has become more compassionate toward those who suffer in silence. This is an enormously positive development, and it is likely an outgrowth of our greater understanding of mental illness.
The causes of suicide are complex, but they seem to involve some combination of nature (genetics) and nurture (culture and environment).
According to the CDC, the suicide rate in the U.S. in 2015 grew to 15.7 per 100,000, sparking fears of a “suicide epidemic.” Continue reading
Chronic pain’s emotional toll can lead to suicide – By Lori Kurtzman & Mike Wagner, The Columbus Dispatch – Sep 4, 2016
There were brain surgeries and constant headaches, sleep binges that lasted for days. His right side partially frozen, Steven Lichtenberg could barely walk.
Then came Crohn’s disease, which caused regular bouts of diarrhea and nausea, leaving him keeled over. Eventually the chemo treatments, pain meds and surgeries stripped Lichtenberg of his ability to show emotion.
When life was darkest, he couldn’t even cry.
In May 2015, without warning to his loved ones, the 32-year-old Dublin man shot himself at his parents’ home. Continue reading
How to Address the Connection Between Chronic Pain and Suicide | The Mighty By Tiffany Greer May 28, 2017
I recently had a doc say to me, “Fibromyalgia won’t kill you.”
I shot back, “Yeah, I know. The other half of that statement is, “But it will make you wish you were dead.’”
Let’s just say that particular doctor’s visit didn’t go well.
The reality is that there are many chronic pain conditions and illnesses that in themselves, are not deadly. Continue reading
Opioid crisis: Pain patients pushed to the brink; Overdose prevention efforts have had unintended — and dire — consequences By Markian Hawryluk, The Bulletin, @markianhawryluk – Jun 5, 2017
Three weeks after her last appointment, Sonja Mae Jonsson got a call from her doctor’s office in Waldport, telling her she needed to come in. Her urine drug screen had tested positive for a drug she hadn’t been prescribed.
The doctor would no longer prescribe her any pain medication.
Linda Jonsson, a registered nurse, had taken over her daughter’s care after a traumatic brain injury when she was 32, and carefully monitored her daughter’s medications. She pleaded with the clinic they had made a mistake.
Without the pain medications, they would be condemning her daughter to a life of pain. Continue reading
The Global Pain Crisis | Psychology Today – May 2017
Images and words of America’s opioid overdose epidemic have captured headlines and TV news feeds for the last several years.
But there’s a different image seared into my mind, a mental picture of a different little kid and two adults. This one never made it into the news, but it’s just as real.
It took place in India, on June 1, 2014. The little boy in this scene had been suffering unbearable pain for most of his eight years, pain triggered by a severe genetic disorder. The hospital he was in, like most hospitals in India, had no morphine.
Eventually, the parents did the only thing they could think of to stop his pain.
They killed him. Continue reading
Warning to the FDA: Beware of “Simple” Solutions in Chronic Pain and Addiction – Face Facts – by Richard Lawhern – May 2017
On May 9-10, 2017, the US FDA held a workshop titled “Training Health Care Providers on Pain Management and Safe Use of Opioid Analgesics—Exploring the Path Forward.” I attended that Workshop in person to offer public comment on behalf of chronic pain patients. This paper is an expansion on the same theme.
“… If you are truly concerned with the safety of patients who are prescribed opioid analgesics, then your first duty may be to adjourn this conference with a public acknowledgment that you aren’t ready to train doctors because you have no viable or safe standard of medical care in which to train them.
This is true because the March 2016 CDC Guidelines on prescription of opioids are fundamentally incomplete, desperately flawed, and actively dangerous to the lives and health of hundreds of thousands of people.” 1 Continue reading