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Another Way the DEA Makes People Suffer

June 23, 2008

Katherine Coble has a blog post detailing her personal struggle for adequate pain relief. She says:

Here’s the thing. I have multiple chronic pain conditions. (By multiple I mean “two”.) Because of living with these for years, I’ve developed allergies and/or holes in interior body parts that prevent me from taking most over-the-counter pain meds. Here’s where the DEA comes in. (No, I haven’t forgotten the premise of this post.) This week I was having a bad endometriosis flare. My doctor prescribes 12 Lortab a month for this purpose. He will not prescribe any more because of the “danger for addiction.” I’ve told him that since I’ve been told I can no longer supplement the Lortab with Anaprox (an NSAID), I need an alternative for pain management. His office’s official alternative?

“Go to the ER.”

You need to go read the rest of her piece. Pain relief medications have been so stigmatized that it’s easy to forget that real people in pain may be suffering because of our collective overreaction. As one of her commenters says, “There is a vast difference between dependent and abuse. I’m also dependent on a blood pressure medicine that can cause me to have a stroke if I miss one dose, yet no one bitches about me taking medicine for my high blood pressure every day, but I’m supposed to be in severe pain every day?”

On a somewhat related note, NPR recently aired a series on drug-related asset seizure.

One Comment leave one →
  1. Dani Medina permalink
    June 24, 2008 11:28 am

    I have been in the same problem. I have chronic back pain from a work injury. Many doctors kept telling me that it was all in my head. I was allergic to many pain medications that worked for the pain. Unfortunately the insurance company thought I was selling the medication or was severely addicted to it. The decided not to pay for my medications any more. Recently, the docotors found that I have no disc in my back where there should be one and there was reason for the pain. I have a high tolerance and they are surprised I am still walking. I still take the medications, but the doctors now don’t bitch about it.

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