Prescription Painkiller Addiction Epidemic Linked to Trends in Pain Management
| Opium products obtained from poppy plants have been used and abused for thousands of years. However it is only in since Friedrich Wilhelm Adam Sertürner first isolated the compound that he would name morphine from the opium poppy in 1804 that we would begin using synthetic and semi synthetic opioid compounds in medicine. These compounds would later include codeine, oxycodone, heroin, and many others. Some of these are considerably stronger than morphine. That is the origin of the opioid abuse epidemic we are facing to today.
This article, written by Kenneth Chance, originally appeared on https://www.arrowheadlodgerecovery.com/baby-boomers-prescription-opioid-painkiller-addiction. Kenneth Chance is the founder and CEO/President of Arrowhead Lodge Recovery.
Abuse of Prescription Opiates Today
Today, there is widespread abuse of prescription opiates that are structurally similar to heroin. Recently, the first time-release painkiller Oxycontin hit the market and many believe it to be at the center of the rising numbers of Americans seeking treatment for opiate addiction and dependence.
Oxycontin lacked any sort of consumer safeguards. Patients and addicts discovered almost immediately that the pills could be chewed; or the time release coating could be dissolved. Then, the pills could be snorted or injected. There really has not been a delivery method of a medicine this poorly conceived since the Benzedrine Inhaler.
Purdue is the company that created the drug; and aggressively marketed it. Purdue chose to maintain their claims that Oxycontin actually had a lower abuse potential than other medicines because a patient would not need to take as many pills in a day.
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