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FDA to curtail pain meds

Discussion in 'Pain Management' started by Mudpro, Jun 30, 2009.

  1. Mudpro

    Mudpro graduate
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    "An expert panel convened by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration voted today to recommend greater regulation of acetaminophen -- the most commonly used painkiller in the country."

    Source: ABC News

    One of the primary factors in going ahead with my hip surgery was to cut back (eliminate) the perscription and over the counter pain meds I was taking heavily on a daily basis.
     
  2. loggon

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    Good for you Mud.
     
  3. Texas

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    Seems to me its easier for people who dont need it to get it. And the people who need it cant. I see some older people that are suffering and get nothing,. its terrible. My grandmother had cancer, died of it and they wanted to stop the medicine as she would become addicted to it........ok?...
     
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  4. Josephine

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    I don't understand your country's obsession with this medication. It's one of the most widely used and safest otc medicines providing the user sticks to the recommended dosages. For occasional use it's excellent.
     
  5. Judles

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    That poor dear, Kim! They should have made her comfortable in her final days! So sorry, hon! :t
     
  6. Texas

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    No Jo is right I think they are going over board. I know like she would really be worried about being addict at that point...Welcome back Jo....
     
  7. loggon

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    The news was just on and it showed executives from Tynol, Advil, and Alieve and others testifing that it is not the drug it is those that abuse the drug. They take more than the box says to take.

    It does not look like the commitee will do anything.

    You can not force folks to follow directions (as we have seen on here) they are going to take as many as they want to and do as they want, even when they are told it can harm them.

    Most was on how folks were dying from liver problems due to taking too much esp. tylnol. Well :doh::doh:you take too much whose fault is that. The meds are safe when taken as directed. Should not take a brain surgeon to understand that.

    I don' t like taking a lot of the strong prescription pain meds, but otc now that is a different story. Folks need
    the meds to help as long as they take them only when needed.:hissy:
     
  8. Judles

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    It's forbidden fruit here, Jo!!! What a lot of the UK meds are over the countern they are serious prescription medication in the US!!!,
     
  9. PRGal

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    Pat (loggon) is absolutely right--it's not the safety of the drug itself, it's the stupidity of consumers who refuse to follow directions and think, "well, if one if good then two should be better, faster, whatever . . ."

    So, I would submit that where our country gets "obsessive" is in trying to protect fools from themselves . . . (Stepping down from soap box now :wink:)
     
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  10. Jamie

    Jamie ADMINISTRATOR Administrator

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    Oh, PR.....don't get me started on the dunces who overindulge themselves in over-the-counter medicine....or prescription meds for that matter. I could certainly join you on that soapbox!!! I get very tired of the government trying to legislate against stupidity. Ain't never gonna happen...someone will always manage to out-stupid your rules. It's all part of our country's "victim" mentality. Okay...I need to stop now or I'll have elevated blood pressure all night long!
     
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  11. Surfsister

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    FDA Warns About Vicodin and Percocet

    FDA advisers vote to take Vicodin, Percocet off market

    (CNN) -- A government advisory panel voted Tuesday to recommend eliminating prescription drugs that combine acetaminophen with narcotics -- such as Vicodin and Percocet -- because of their risk for overdose and for severe liver injury.

    The panel, assembled by the Food and Drug Administration, voted 20 to 17 to advise the FDA to remove such prescription combination drugs from the market.

    The group recommended that the FDA "send a clear message that there's a high likelihood of overdose from prescription narcotics and acetaminophen products," Dr. Sandra L. Kweder of the FDA's Office of New Drugs said at a news conference after Tuesday's meeting.

    The panel was meeting for the second day to vote on recommendations to reduce the risk of serious liver injury associated with acetaminophen, which is found not only in prescription drugs, but also in over-the-counter medications such as Tylenol and NyQuil.

    It also advised the FDA to lower the maximum daily dose of acetaminophen in over-the-counter and prescription medications, and to address the formulations and dosing recommendations for children.

    Kweder said the FDA is already "well on the road" to addressing the pediatric concerns.

    The FDA is not required to follow the recommendations of its advisory committees, although the agency typically does.

    If the agency does not choose to eliminate prescription combination drugs, the panel said the FDA should lower the amount of acetaminophen in the drugs and also take some action to ensure that subscribers and patients are aware of potential liver damage posed by taking these products, Kweder said.

    In another vote, the panel had voted to advise the FDA to put a boxed warning on the prescription combination drugs.

    Although acetaminophen is one of the most commonly used drugs in the United States for treating pain and fever, overdoses of acetaminophen have been linked to 56,000 emergency room visits, 26,000 hospitalizations and 458 deaths during the 1990s, according to the FDA, citing one study.

    The agency cited another study, a 2007 Centers for Disease Control and Prevention population-based report, that estimated acetaminophen was the likely cause of most of the estimated 1,600 acute liver failures each year.

    The advisory panel could have voted to recommend pulling over-the-counter drugs that use acetaminophen in combination with other ingredients -- such as NyQuil, Pamprin and Allerest -- but it chose not to.

    Some panelists cited data that suggests that combination over-the-counter drugs account for less than 10 percent of acetaminophen overdoses.

    Kweder said families should carefully read medicine labels to know what is in the medicine and how much should be taken.

    Abbott Laboratories, which makes the brand-name Vicodin, which has also been available as a generic since the mid-1980s, said in a statement that "today's discussion is an important continuation of the dialog around balancing patient safety with the need for treatment options for patients in pain."

    It said, "Pain affects 75 million Americans, more than diabetes, cancer and heart disease combined" and added that it would follow the FDA's final determination.

    Endo Pharmaceuticals, which makes the brand-name Percocet, did not immediately return a phone call seeking comment. Percocet is also available as a generic.
     
  12. Josephine

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    So when are the FDA going to ban alcohol? Don't the abusers of alcohol (i.e. alcoholics) die of liver disease by the thousand every year?

    Oh no, silly me! :doh: Alcohol earns far too much in tax to be banned! Besides which,
    if I recall correctly, didn't your government try that once before? :hehe:

    Nah - much simpler to pick on a little pill to justify their existance! :nah:
     
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  13. FrogFeathers

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    What makes me angry about this kind of thing is that for people who need it and take it properly. We're the ones getting punished by the people who abuse it and then get hurt by it.

    I take Vicodin daily. I take the prescribed amount. I also take OTC acetaminophen. Also the prescribed amount ("prescribed" in the sense my doctor told me to take two every twelve hours as needed, but I have to purchase it myself because my insurance won't cover it). I need these things just to be able to function in a normal sense. And now they want to take those things from me.

    I'm done whinging for now.
     
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  14. petuniafish

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    Jeez,
    I could really go on and on about this but in another direction.

    I am a recovering alcoholic.
    I didn't overindulge in alcohol long. Went through a painful divorce 26 years ago and in a matter of 6 months was looking at the bottom of a bottle of wine every nite. I have close relatives who are full blown alcoholics and who never have escaped it. I believe addictive personalities are just that- something we are born with, a chemical deficiency or additional nasty thing in the genes.

    I was lucky. Knew it was in my family and got myself into AA immediately. I would be on the road to losing my kids, job, life- quickly. I am 25 years sober, no alcohol. It's been hard, but I am eternally grateful to the good people of AA.

    ANY narcotic medication inside me makes me feel "WHEEEEEEEE!-FUN!", even tho it's given specifically for pain. The brain says if ONE feels good, more will make me feel better. I could easily become addicted to pain meds as I did with alcohol. It was hard for me to stop them- took 10 weeks. And you would be amazed at the numbers of ordinary citizens who are able to be fully functional and hide addiction to pain meds or alcohol. Pain meds are DANGEROUS for alcoholics, depressives, anyone with a possible addictive personality.

    It is impossible for non-alcoholics to understand. The only way to relate is TO BE an alcoholic or addict. So please don't judge me or others who DO overindulge or become addicted. Vicoden and Percocet are some of the most abused drugs in the US.

    When I HAVE to use any pain killer I make my doctor put me on a schedule-what would be reasonable for a week, months time. If I run out then I have to talk to him first. I made my OS talk to my primary care MD and had the primary prescribe my pain meds. It is too much of a dangerous situation for me.

    Once an alcoholic or an addict, always an alcoholic. It is a disease. Don't judge me or others unless you've walked a mile in my shoes. I would love to be LIKE YOU and not have this problem. Narcotics (except for those with cancer or intractable constant severe pain) should always be carefully monitored. These laws, depending upon their final outcome, protect me, people like me and your children, grandchildren.

    Please be patient with this legislation and hopefully it will end up becoming better for all of us. Don't think it will be a bad thing- people with hip/knee replacement should not be affected. Only people like me, or people like Rush Limbaugh- actual drug seekers.

    Much love,
    nancy
     
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  15. JudyS

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    Nancy
    I have always said to never judge a person until you have walked a mile in his mocassins (maybe a native american said it first). I am such a firm beliver in that.
    I think the combination part is what they should do away with if liver disease and overuse of acetaminiphn is the problem. when I was in the hospital they gave me perocet or whatever it is withuot the acetaminiphin in it. I was part of a drug study for IV acetaminifin (cant spell that word) so could not take it in any other drug.
    judy
     
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  16. loggon

    loggon big-cheese

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    Well said Nancy. I am proud of you for working so hard on your addiction. You are on the right track and I do realize it could take
    just temptation to get you off track.

    I do not feel the control of meds is a bad thing. I don't like to take meds period and I have to force my self to even take a vitiman.

    I never took the pain meds as I was suppose to as I could take an advil instead. I would only take them when I had more pain than
    an advil could handle. I have just been taking the asprin for blood thiner per doctor. But I don't like doing that and plan on stop taking them at 6 months.

    Thank you for your post and you are so on the right tract may God always give you the strength to stay strong.
     
  17. petuniafish

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    I don't work hard on my addiction really. There is a, whatever you want to call it, a "Force" in the universe that guides me. I am blessed. I have relatives who have died from a combo of pills and alcohol. People like me look at this legislation as a good thing. I have a beautiful life. I have great kids, grandkids, beautiful home on the ocean, good husband, job I love, and have traveled the world. Thanks AA.

    I don't think that people realize that pain receptors are altered when one is on long term pain medications. People who are easily non-addicts can become addicts. Those pain receptors cause us to require more and more pain medication to the point at which nothing works. These folks may not be "addicts" but they are surely "dependent" on pain meds. I think there should be more and more education required of physicians, and this is part of proposed new legislation.

    I have been an RN for many years and have seen RN's become addicted to the pain meds we give. This has changed in the 37 years since I was began practicing. There are policies in place now that make this a very rare occurrence. Years ago I had coworkers taking drugs they were supposed to give patients! There are now safeguards in place to prevent this from happening. I was fortunate not to be working for those 6 months when I was drinking a bottle of wine to get myself to fall asleep at nite during my divorce.

    RN's in my state are now required to take "pain continuing education" classes every two years so we are continually updated in knowing how to assess the patient in pain. We are encouraged to bug the heck out of physicians who are adverse to prescribe stronger pain meds for the patient in pain in any situation, inpatient, hospice, homecare.

    Please don't worry that the nurse who is taking care of you is an alcoholic or addict! There are very stringent safeguards to prevent this.

    Sorry. I am probably getting carried away here. But 10% of Americans have addictive or depressive personalities and subject to becoming dependent on Vicoden and Percocet etc.. I don't believe anyone here has to be worried that their pain meds will be more difficult to obtain. This FDA inquiry is to protect all of us. Doctors will be required to monitor more carefully everyone- and stop overprescribing to the Michael Jacksons, Rush Limbaughs, Heath Ledgers of the US.
     
  18. Texas

    Texas alpha

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    Well Nancy 25 yrs sober is amazing...And maybe you broke that family chain. Im going thru this now, its my brother, its heart breaking but his is marajuana. hes 46, 2 kids , we;ll he is divorced now. Im afraid he will loose everything soon. I have confronted him but I guess until he is ready, I cant physically drag him into rehad....I can be there for him which I am but I wish I could make him but I cant...Its sad . I also came from a long line or addicts, but I have been able to stay out of that. My brother wasnt...
     
  19. petuniafish

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    So sad Kim to watch a family member fall, fall, fall. It's the old adage of a person has to be honest, open and willing to be ready for recovery. And no one can do it for another. Don't think anyone can break the family chain. It is proven that it is in one's genes. None of my three adult sons have shown any signs of having addictive personalities- again it's a blessing. Addictive personalities are as hereditary as diabetes or cerebral palsy.

    My brother too has lost everything. It's too difficult to talk to him now, as he lies so much. Alcoholism/addiction is a disease of denial. Out of six children in my family, only three have the disease. One sister also with the disease but recovered. She since has died of something not related to alcoholism, but what a beautiful life she had sober.

    I am SO FOR this legislation. It can save lives.
     
  20. Josephine

    Josephine FORUM ADMIN, NURSE DIRECTOR Administrator

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    Dear Nancy - you are such an example of courage and tenacity. All power to you, girl!

    Only thing I would add (could add) to your posts is that it's also amazing how many people continue to function as ordinary citizens yet are addicted to cocaine and other hard drugs. I've known a few and it always staggered me.
     

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