As of December 19, 2016 is there a federal law that my doctor cannot prescribe hydrocodone and benzodiazepines together?
It's funny that you ask this, because of a situation im dealing with. I'm not sure why you said as of Dec 19th and am wondering as are others who told you this. Here's the thing... for a little while now there have been more cases reported of overdose from people taking a combination of opioids and benzos, like Vicodin and xanax for example. I have heard it quite a bit on the news over the past year. Personally my pain mgmt doctor has begun expressing concern about my combination of meds. One that he prescribes and one that my psychiatrist prescribes. I have been taking this combo for years and he is just now stating his concerns which I believe is an effort to protect himself, as he has also said he is on a crusade to get his patients off narcotics (he may be receiving pressure from somewhere).
Well I talked to my psychiatrist about this and she said that because I have been taking these medications for so long, and not at a high dose, that she is not concerned that I would overdose. Now... if you have not taken these medications before... say someone took them and they weren't prescribed for them... then there is a level of concern because of the high report of overdose. But it definitely has to do with the dosage, not just the combo. It is safe to take both if they are prescribed and taken appropriately. I think because of these recent reports there may be a more concerted effort by docs now not to prescribe this combination. But it is not against the law.
Somebody; NO, doNO, again the feds and medical board are putting pressure on benzo's as they have with the hydrocodone or any Opiate and are trying to restrict doctors from prescribing more due to overdoses of the two together. So it is going to get to be an act of congress in the USA to get benzo's as it is for pain medications at some point but at this time any doctor can prescribe these two together some doctors may say they can't but that is their preference, not law.
I have also been told this by my Dr, I had to make a choice 3 months ago whether or not to suffer from pain or panic attacks!!! I chose my Klonopin cause my panic attacks scare me so bad, I told my Dr it also scares me that I'm gonna be stuck in pain in my bed, Dr assured me there was other meds he could give me to cover the pain, I guess I'll find out Thursday!!! He said he had a vet that has severe PTSD and severe pain cause she's missing a leg and she had to make the same decision. It sucks for people who doesn't abuse it and really need it!!
There is no such law. However there are contraindicators with benzos combined with opiods. This is due to the fact that both types of medications are respitory depressants, they will both slow your heart rate and decrease blood pressure. As far as there being any laws, such laws do not exist. Reason i am certain is because i suffer from MS and take multiple narcotic pain meds in conjunction with my benzo (xanax) to manage my anxiety d/o and panic d/o. It is the discretion of the physician.
I was told 3 months ago by my PA at the pain management that I had to get off xanax by the end of the year. That is was a federal law going into effect Jan 1 that you couldn’t take both together. I’ve been taking Nirco 10/350 and 1 bar of xanax for 12 years with no problem. This is all brought on by all the kids that can’t get a job and have no education start using heron and wind up overdosing.
I have searched for such "Law" and there is no such law that i can find, or know of. I was told today 3-6-18 by my Pa that my dose of benzo will be cut in half, and the weaning process begins! I've been on the same med, same dose, since 2005. My app today was basically a lecture about the FDA recommendations on all benzodiazepines, and was written a substitute medication to go with my half "weaning" dose of benzo. The drug that has helped me for many years, now is so so bad for me, and must be stopped.
Yep, I was told today by my primary care physician, who prescribes my Xanax, that I could no longer have Xanax, since I take Norco on a regular basis (prescribed by my pain management doctor). She said the FDA has very recently said that patients can no longer be treated with both benzos & opioids because of abuse and overdoses. I couldn’t believe it! She felt really bad telling me that, I could tell, but omg! She said that she could get in disciplinary trouble if they find she continued to prescribe Xanax for me, and that if a person gets in a automobile wreck and they find both benzos and opioids in that person’s system, the prescribing doctor(s) could be sued. So..I’m wondering the same thing. I truly don’t know how I am going to be able to get along without Xanax. My PCP did say that maybe a psychiatrist can prescribe Xanax even to a person on opioids, but based on what someone said earlier in this thread—it doesn’t look like that’s the case either.
Google and you can find the CDC recommendations that have sparked this. They are recommendations, not a law. Some prescribers are simply not willing to risk the government scrutiny and are adopting arbitrary policies that the two can't be prescribed together. That is their right to adopt such a policy, whether it is a law or not. The recommendation is that providers are to take due care when prescribing the two together. In other words, they should understand why both are needed and document accordingly. The recommendation does not suggest there could never by any medical need to have both medications at the same time, which of course there often is.
I confronted my pain clinic with these "recommendations" after they too tried to tell me it was a law. She then admitted it was not a law, but as a result of the commendations they were adopting this policy and there was nothing she could do. She also admitted that I (and the majority) were being punished by the actions of the few (abusers). Reprehensible to do this to people suffering. Not to mention that most abusers don't go through proper clinical channels to get these meds, so these actions do nothing to stop the abuse. If anything, it drives law abiding people to the black market in desperation. These actions are clearly driving up the rate of overdose as a result, not helping the issue. Keep speaking out. People in chronic pain need to have their voice heard, and treatment our our condition is not an "epidemic". No one who ever suffered, or had a loved one suffer, from chronic pain would refer to their treatment as an epidemic. God bless. I hope all here get the relief they need and deserve.
- Hydrocodone Information for Consumers
- Hydrocodone Information for Healthcare Professionals (includes dosage details)
- Side Effects of Hydrocodone (detailed)
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