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Where Are Opioid Painkillers Prescribed the Most?

Posted 1 day ago by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, July 19, 2018 – A close look at U.S. congressional districts has yielded new information about the opioid crisis: The highest rates of prescriptions for opioid painkillers are in the Southeast, Appalachia and the rural West. Focusing on prescribing rates for opioids like Oxycontin in congressional districts could help improve efforts to fight the nation's opioid addiction crisis, ...

Opioids Given Too Easily to Children: Study

Posted 4 days ago by Drugs.com

MONDAY, July 16, 2018 – Many children are prescribed powerful opioid painkillers they don't really need, putting them and those around them at risk, a new study shows. More than one in 10 kids enrolled in Tennessee's Medicaid program received an opioid prescription each year between 1999 and 2014, even though they did not have a severe condition requiring powerful painkillers, the researchers ...

Death Certificate Data May Miss Many Opioid ODs: Study

Posted 27 Jun 2018 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, June 27, 2018 – The actual number of opioid overdose deaths in several U.S. states is likely far higher than death certificates suggest, a new study says. Incomplete reporting of overdose deaths can hamper efforts to fight the nation's opioid epidemic, according to the University of Pittsburgh researchers. They said that as many as 70,000 opioid overdose deaths were not included in ...

Risky Prescribing Boosts Opioid Death Risk

Posted 25 Jun 2018 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, June 25, 2018 – When opioid pain medications, such as OxyContin, are prescribed in a risky manner, that increases a patient's chances of death. That's the conclusion of a new study by RAND Corporation researchers who analyzed prescribing data in Massachusetts from 2011 to 2015, and found that half of adults received at least one opioid prescription during that time. In addition, at least ...

If Opioid Addicts Survive OD, Other Hazards Lie Ahead: Study

Posted 20 Jun 2018 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, June 20, 2018 – Survivors of an opioid overdose may consider themselves lucky, but they remain at heightened risk of dying – not just from drugs, but from a host of medical problems or suicide, a new study finds. Compared with the general population, patients who lived through an opioid overdose were 130 times more likely to die of drug-use-related causes in the following year, the ...

When DEA Cracked Down on Opioids, Abusers Moved to Black Market: Study

Posted 16 Jun 2018 by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, June 15, 2018 – Illegal opioid sales on the internet have surged in the wake of U.S. government crackdowns on prescriptions for the highly addictive painkillers, a new study shows. In 2014, the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration reclassified the opioid hydrocodone (Vicodin). The change made the drug harder to prescribe and banned automatic refills. Not surprisingly, the number of such ...

Patients on Opioids OK With Lower Doses

Posted 8 Jun 2018 by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, June 8, 2018 – Even patients who have taken high doses of opioid painkillers for long periods of time aren't unhappy with their care when their doctor lowers their dose, new research suggests. The study included nearly 2,500 patients with chronic pain who had been on high doses of opioids for at least six straight months. The researchers compared patient satisfaction scores between those ...

Opioids Behind 1 in 5 Deaths of Young U.S. Adults

Posted 1 Jun 2018 by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, June 1, 2018 – Opioid overdoses are now to blame for one-fifth of deaths among young American adults, new research finds. The study is the latest to detail the toll of the national opioid epidemic. Researchers found that between 2001 and 2016, the number of opioid-related deaths in the United States more than quadrupled. By 2016, one in 65 deaths nationwide was linked to an opioid ...

Hospitals Should, and Could, Avoid IV Opioids: Study

Posted 14 May 2018 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, May 14, 2018 – When it comes to pain management for hospital patients, opioid pills or injections are less dangerous and just as effective as giving the drug intravenously, a new study shows. The results "have the potential to be practice-changing," study author Dr. Adam Ackerman, clinical instructor in internal medicine at Yale School of Medicine, said in a university news release. The ...

Walmart Announces New Measures to Cut Opioid Abuse

Posted 8 May 2018 by Drugs.com

Walmart Inc. says it will take more steps to reduce opioid medication abuse and misuse. Earlier this year, the company announced free opioid medication disposal in all its U.S. pharmacies. On Monday, the company said that within the next 60 days, Walmart and Sam's Club will restrict initial acute opioid prescriptions to no more than a seven-day supply, with up to a 50 morphine milligram ...

Non-Opioids Often Underused After Back Surgery

Posted 8 May 2018 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, May 8, 2018 – Spine and joint surgery patients aren't taking advantage of common pain relievers like Tylenol or Motrin during their recovery, researchers say. Instead, many are given opioids, such as oxycodone (OxyContin) or hydrocodone (Vicodin). These highly addictive narcotics are potentially deadly when abused. The United States is currently grappling with an ongoing opioid ...

Racial Divide Narrows in Opioid Prescribing in U.S.

Posted 5 May 2018 by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, May 4, 2018 – Black Americans are no longer less likely than whites to be prescribed opioid painkillers – but that means their risk of addiction to the narcotics has increased, researchers say. "To our knowledge, this is the first evidence of a potential narrowing of the divide in opioid prescribing by race and ethnicity," study lead author Matthew Davis said in a University of Michigan ...

Take the Ouch Out of Bee Stings

Posted 29 Apr 2018 by Drugs.com

SUNDAY, April 29, 2018 – With summer comes the stings of bees and wasps, but one expert has advice on how to keep the pain to a minimum. "The first thing to do is to get the stinger out quickly," said Dr. Carrie Kovarik. She's an associate professor of dermatology, dermatopathology and infectious diseases at the University of Pennsylvania. "The longer the stinger stays in the skin, the more ...

Many Opioid Overdoses May Be Suicides

Posted 26 Apr 2018 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, April 25, 2018 – As the United States grapples with an ongoing opioid epidemic, experts are calling attention to a hidden aspect of the crisis: Many overdose deaths may, in fact, be suicides. The researchers describe suicide as a "silent contributor" to the nation's opioid overdose death rate. It's hard to know exactly how many Americans have intentionally overdosed on opioids in ...

Advil Plus Tylenol Better Than Opioids for Dental Pain

Posted 25 Apr 2018 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, April 25, 2018 – Over-the-counter ibuprofen and acetaminophen provide better relief for dental pain than prescription opioids and are less likely to cause side effects, researchers say. "What we know is that prescribing narcotics should be a last resort," said study co-author Anita Aminoshariae, an associate professor at Case Western Reserve University's School of Dental Medicine, in ...

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