Painkillers, particularly opioids, have been under attack in the U.S.. The media rails against overuse of pain meds, how regulatory departments do not sanction “bad” doctors enough, how many people overdose and die, etc. etc.. That all has some truth to it; the other side is, what are the pain patients supposed to do? The current environment makes it difficult for doctors to prescribe pain meds; not THAT difficult however. There are a # of reasons why many docs do not want to prescribe pain meds, some legitimate, some not so. The legitimate reasons include the increased scrutiny that prescribing opioids has brought, fear of the state dept. of regulation and DEA, fear of lawsuits, etc.. The non-legitimate reasons why docs are loathe to prescribe include not wanting to put up with diffficult phone calls and difficult patient encounters. Prescribing opioids adds complications, and many docs just say it is not worthwhile. In this environment, I do not really blame them. If a doctor says “I do not prescirbe pain meds, or if I do only 10 at a time”, it eliminates many difficult patient encounters, phone calls, problems with pharmacies, lawsuit possibilities, and fear of state and federal scrutiny. Nonetheless, that leaves the pain patients out in the cold, finding it very difficult to find docs who will prescribe. That is a major problem. Yes, there have been overdoses and overuse, but 90% of patients do not overuse the pain meds, become addicted, or overdose. Should we really punish the 90% because we have a problem with 10% of patients? I think not……… is not fair………

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