PROP: Are Opioids Appropriate?
Below is an open letter from Dr. Andrew Kolodny, and his colleagues at PROP– Physicians for Responsible Opioid Prescribing. I invite all patients who are taking opioids to review the letter, and to check out the instructional videos.
I also encourage readers to visit a section of my other blog, that includes news releases related to pain medication diversion and overdose (or search for ‘Google news’ and enter ‘overdose’, and you’ll get the stories directly). Most people who take pain medications are aware of the tension that occurs in every doctor visit, and a look at this link will help understand why that tension exists: http://suboxonetalkzone.com/consequences-of-untreated-opioid-dependence/
Dear Friends and Colleagues,
A couple of days ago Dr. Thomas Frieden, Director of the CDC, held a press conference paired with the release of “CDC Vital Signs: Prescription Painkiller Overdoses in the US”.
This is a call to action from the CDC. In the Vital Signs document the CDC outlines important steps that can be taken by state governments, medical boards, health insurance companies and prescribers to bring the epidemic of overdose deaths and addiction under control.
Physicians for Responsible Opioid Prescribing (PROP) wishes to thank the CDC for issuing this important report and for their strong leadership on this issue. We would also like to take this opportunity to share with you our new and revised videos on opioid prescribing.
At PROP, we believe that it’s not just pill mill operators and drug dealers that are fueling the epidemic. An even greater problem may be well-meaning prescribers who have been misled to believe that compassionate care for a person with chronic pain automatically equals an opioid prescription. We hope that these videos will permit prescribers to properly weigh the risks versus the benefits when considering long-term opioid therapy.
The CDC has demonstrated a relationship between increased overdose deaths, increased addiction rates and increased opioid prescribing. To turn this trend around, providers must understand that opioid prescribing entails serious risks for patients, their families and the community, so vigilance and caution are essential.
We urge you to carefully read the CDC Vital Signs, to watch these videos, and to assist us in distributing these materials.
Effectiveness for Chronic Pain
This video is new and features interviews with Drs. Mark Sullivan, Alex Cahana and Gilbert Fanciullo. The primary goal is to communicate that long-term opioid therapy is not an evidence-based treatment for chronic pain.
Addiction is NOT Rare in Pain Patients
This video has been revised and now features a clip of CDC Director, Dr. Thomas Frieden. It also includes interviews with Drs. Russell Portenoy*, Nathaniel Katz*, Andrew Kolodny and Thomas Kosten. The purpose of this video is to communicate that pain patients can become addicted to opioids and that misinformation on this topic played a role in causing the epidemic.
High Dose Opioid Therapy
This video has been revised and now features Dr. Lynn Webster*, President-elect of the American Academy of Pain Medicine. It also includes Betty Tully and Drs. Jane Ballantyne, and Thomas Kosten. The purpose of this video is to correct the misperception that there is no upper dose limit for opioid therapy and to communicate that high dose prescribing is a dangerous practice.
Understanding Physical Dependence
This video has been revised and now features Dr. Mark Sullivan from the University of Washington. It also includes Betty Tully and Drs. Jane Ballantyne, and Thomas Kosten. The purpose of this video is help prescribers and the public better understand the meaning of the term physical dependence and to correct the misperception that physical dependence on opioids is benign and clinically unimportant.
Asterisks (*) indicates that speaker has relationships with opioid manufacturers.
Please feel free to use and distribute these videos as you wish. If you have embedded our old videos on your website, please replace them with the new videos. If you would like to obtain a DVD (at no charge), please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org .
If you are interested in joining PROP (membership is open to everyone, not just physicians), please send an email to email@example.com
with “Membership” in the subject line.
Andrew Kolodny, M.D.
Physicians for Responsible Opioid Prescribing
Chairman, Department of Psychiatry, Maimonides Medical Center
920 48th Street, Suite 1510, Brooklyn, New York 11219
Tel: 718 283-7557; Fax: 718 283-6540; firstname.lastname@example.org