The People's Perspective on Medicine

War On Opioids Punishes Desperate Pain Patients

Opioids have become the newest enemy in the war on drugs. Doctors are becoming afraid to prescribe such meds. People in severe chronic pain are suffering.

Watch the news on television or read a newspaper and you will likely see a story about the dangers of opioids. Here is just the latest sampling:

  • “Lawmakers Seek Crackdown on Opioids”, Raleigh, NC
  • “7 in 10 US Workplaces Hit by Opioid Abuse” WebMD
  • “Opioid Rx Abuse Probe Sees A Record 31 Doctors Hit With Sanctions in New Jersey” FOX News, U.S.
  • “Dentists Work To Ease Patients’ Pain with Fewer Opioids” NPR – Weekend Edition Sunday
  • “Should You Fill That Opioid Prescription?” U.S. News & World Report

People In Pain Deserve Relief:

When something goes wrong in your body, the signal you get is pain. Whether it’s an emergency like a broken bone or appendicitis or something more chronic like degenerative back disease, pain is usually the common denominator.

A Short History of Opioids:

Before there were modern pain relievers, humans relied on the natural world to ease suffering. The Sumerians were using opium from the poppy plant by 3,400 BC. They shared the pain-relieving potential of this plant with the Assyrians, who passed it along to the Egyptians. Eventually Alexander the Great took it with him to India and from there opiates spread around the world.

Today, this category of drugs has captured national attention. The opioid epidemic has caused untold misery, and politicians have weighed in on measures to prevent abuse and the deaths that result from it.

The DEA’s War on Opioids:

The Drug Enforcement Administration has cracked down on the medical use of synthetic narcotics such as oxycodone (OxyContin) and hydrocodone, found in Lorcet, Lortab, Norco and Vicodin. Although such drugs have led to addiction and death, they also remain among our most powerful and effective pain relievers.

There was a time when physicians were trusted to use good judgment in the prescribing of hydrocodone and oxycodone. No doubt some were far too promiscuous in prescribing such powerful pain relievers. But others were very thoughtful and cautioned patients about abuse. These doctors prescribed opioids judiciously.

The DEA changed the rules in October, 2014. That was when the Drug Enforcement Administration moved hydrocodone combination pain relievers (HCPs) like Lortab, Norco and Vicodin from Schedule III to Schedule II. That meant no more electronic prescriptions to pharmacies. And doctors could not call in a prescription either. Each prescription was good for only one month. That meant it was much harder for patients suffering from severe chronic pain to access opioids.

Many Physicians Now Worried About Prescribing Opioids:

The media spotlight on the epidemic of opioid-related deaths has scared many physicians away from prescribing such medications. Pharmacists worry about dispensing them, and some patients are too anxious about possible addiction to take these drugs at all.

Most experts recognize that opioids play a key role in easing pain for people at the end of life, particularly those whose pain is related to cancer. Surgeons continue to prescribe such drugs following a major operation.

Chronic Pain Patients Are Suffering:

The controversy is focused on the treatment of chronic non-cancer pain. Doctors have been told that such drugs are inappropriate for people with persistent pain, and CMS (Medicaid and Medicare) has drafted a policy that would make it difficult or impossible for many patients to get prescriptions for such medications.

What impact will that have on their medical care? We have heard from hundreds of patients who are now feeling desperate. Here are just a few examples:

D.M. in Baton Rouge, LA, shared a poignant story:

“It is really a shame how a physician who took an oath ‘To Do No Harm’ out of medical school can bow down to a government that has no business meddling in the practice of medicine.

“I was injured twice in Vietnam, and in 1988 a backhoe drove over me. I’ve had four back surgeries as a result, but am left with chronic pain. I haven’t told the VA that this 65-year-old soldier who proudly served my country in time of need often thinks about taking my own life. It is truly sad that the very country I went to war for is the one that is going to be the death of me.

“I will fight this pain with all I have because I care about my family. But since my dosage of Oxycontin was reduced, I have a hard time getting even two hours of sleep a night. I can not find a position in which I am not in pain.”

Many other chronic pain patients who never abused opioid pain relievers are now at the end of their rope. Many have suffered unbearable withdrawal because they can no longer access medications that allowed them to function. Others, like this Vietnam vet, are becoming suicidal because the pain is so excruciating.

Other Stories from People In Pain:

Jan in Plano, IL, is also at the end of her rope:

“I had a crush injury to my feet and legs 17 years ago. All my nerves died. I have been on everything, but mostly just Fentanyl patches every other day.

“A neurologist who knew nothing about pain stopped my Fentanyl when I tried to have a spinal stem implant. I felt like Joan of Arc burning at the stake. I couldn’t lift my head off the bed, and vomited till taken to the hospital.

“The pain was excruciatingly unbearable!! If I couldn’t get my Fentanyl I would have to find a way to end it. So the deaths from drug addicts that the DEA is trying to prevent will just be made up in suicides from people in severe, unending pain! The government needs to stay out of our lives.”

Rose in Cape Vincent, NY, is also desperate:

“I injured my back at work 8 years ago. I have herniated, bulging discs and scoliosis as a result of my accident. I have Protein C deficiency, a blood clotting disorder, and therefore am not a candidate for surgery.

“I’m 42 and live with horrific pain. I’m on disability and walk with a cane. My quality of life continues to deteriorate every day. I spend much of my time in bed and am no longer able to enjoy the things I used to do.

“Because of the Protein C deficiency, I am not supposed to take NSAIDs or steroids. These drugs can cause fatal bleeding problems. Last year my pain management physician was arrested. At that time, I was prescribed morphine. After his arrest, I ran out of medication and suffered terribly from withdrawal.

“I’ve suffered so much since then and I’m no longer able to live alone. I was taking copious amounts of ibuprofen, despite the risks of internal bleeding. I was recently hospitalized for chronic pain because I could not get out of bed and could not walk. I spent 8 days in the hospital where my pain was controlled for the first time since my former doctor’s arrest.

“While I was hospitalized, I was referred to pain management. I was given enough pain medication to get me through until my appointment. The medication barely makes any difference whatsoever in controlling my pain. I never abused, misused or sold my pain medication. I don’t understand why I’m being punished, along with so many others who suffer from chronic pain.

“I’m so miserable that I wish I’d get another DVT [deep vein thrombosis] or pulmonary embolism and just be put out of this misery. Animals are treated more humanely than those of us who suffer this way. I really believe the CDC and DEA are depending on all of us to kill ourselves. I believe that they want to eliminate all of us who are disabled and rely on SSD or other forms of government assistance because we’re “burdens” to society. I know this must sound crazy, but why are those of us who suffer so terribly being treated like drug addicts?”

“Perhaps if we all joined together, we could stop this horrendous patient abuse. I only want some quality of life back.”

The Terrible Dilemma:

There are few medications that work as well as opioids to control severe pain. That is why surgeons still prescribe drugs like Vicodin after a major operation and why hospice workers rely on narcotics to ease the pain of terminal cancer patients. Medications like NSAIDs or tramadol just do not work as well and they carry their own risks.

It is not clear that the war on opioid medications will reduce the death toll. Some drug abusers will turn to heroin or other illicit drugs instead of prescription narcotics. It does appear that these policies have left millions of chronic pain patients abandoned without much of a safety net.

If you would like to read more about how patients are coping with the new laws, here are some links:

What do you think? We would like to get your perspective in the comment section below.

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About the Author
Joe Graedon is a pharmacologist who has dedicated his career to making drug information understandable to consumers. His best-selling book, The People’s Pharmacy, was published in 1976 and led to a syndicated newspaper column, syndicated public radio show and web site. In 2006, Long Island University awarded him an honorary doctorate as “one of the country's leading drug experts for the consumer.” .
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I have been taking Vicodin (Hydrocodone-Ibuprofen) for years for chronic pain. It is a tremendous help. I have tried the tylenol formulations, and they are worthless to me.

I have been unable to fill my monthly prescription for 3 months now as they are always ‘backordered’. I believe the manufacturers are running scared because of the Feds and nothing more.

Our august politicians and bureaucrats seem to think it’s just OK for us to suffer through our pain.

I have M.S. and because of unbearable nerve pain, my well respected, 30-year experienced and prominent neurologist, in 2002 put me on a cocktail of 800 mg of Gabapentin, 10 mg of Opana twice a day, and 7.5 mg of Hydrocodone, one three times a day for breakthrough pain. This combination allowed me to have a relatively normal life for twelve years.

However, all this blew up when the maker of Opana was forced to discontinue its production. Next the insurance company required a pre-auth for the hydrocodone. They refused to approve the pain-killer unless I went to a pain treatment center. I no longer am able to drive, and the closest facility is 40 miles away. I opted to pay cash for the hydrocodone, and the neurologist prescribed 10 mg hydrocodone 4 times a day. This prescription is of some help, but I am chasing the pain all day, tempting me to cheat and go to the street. I spend 70% of my day lying in bed, as this is more comfortable than having any kind of life. I am only 67, but feel my life is over. Being dead now is a real option for me.

The crack down on opioids only hurt the ones who need them. Because an abuser will always find something to abuse!

Lets fight back

I have suffered with a failed back surgery since 2001 and stayed away from opioid pain meds until the pain made my life unbearable to live. With stenosis closing the openings for my nerves down my legs from the spine, I cannot walk much, sit up much, eat normal, and now without any pain medication due to the pharmacy board and Governor Kasich, no doctors will treat us in chronic pain. I am 49 with two young children and deal with thoughts of suicide on a daily basis as I am finding fewer reasons to live. Sleep is the best thing I can do for pain relief, thank you Pharmacy Board and FDA.

With nothing more than traffic tickets, I am now going to purchase pain medication on the street illegally, heroin or whatever dealers are able to supply me with. You the Pharmacy Board, Medical Board, FDA, DEA, and Politicians are responsible for deaths of legal pain bound patients that are unable to be treated by a doctor for fear of losing their license.

Every doctor and specialist I have spoken to has told me how sorry they feel for me and they understand. The truth is, when I blow off my head from this relentless pain, you can add my name to the statistics. When is the government going to represent the needs and wants of th people. Heroin use has continued to rise even more with the tight restrictions on Pain Meds that are monitored by a medical professional.

To me, it seems like mostly everyone in government is willing to leave “legal” people in pain because it is much easier to lower the opioid supply than it is to punish those who are abusing these drugs. I thought with the level of pain medication I was on, mind you it wasn’t enough, but I could at least live out my life with lower pain. I am starting to wonder if “legal” pain medicine patients are going to join those who get their drugs illegally from street dealers.

At least that will keep the DEA doing what they should be doing, not trying to lower the medication levels of those legally getting their medication from their pain doctors. I believe this is going to push a lot of “legal” pain medicine users into the streets for illegal drugs and NOBODY should ever be put in this situation.

These are the pathetic guidelines for Doctors treating CHRONIC PAIN of ANY SORT regardless of TOLERANCE.

“From office of Governor Kasich, Ohio Guidelines for Prescribing Opioids for the Treatment of Chronic, Non-Terminal Pain 80 mg of a Morphine Equivalent Daily Dose (MED) “Trigger Point”

Preface: These guidelines address the use of opioids for the treatment of chronic, non-terminal pain. “Chronic pain” means pain that has persisted after reasonable medical efforts have been made to relieve the pain or cure its cause and that has continued, either continuously or episodically, for longer than three continuous months.

“The guidelines are intended to help health care providers review and assess their approach in the prescribing of opioids.”

Therefore ignore pain level and tolerance fear CDC, your doctors will.

I was born with a defect in my lower back. My surgeon told me that from an X-ray he took he could tell that because of that defect, I broke my back when I was 10 or twelve years old. This sounds a little impossible but I did not know that I had that break until I was 49 years old. I always had back pain but any doctor I went to misdiagnosed it. I had a lot of physical therapy and I worked like that for 36 years. I have been divorced most of this time and that meant I was raising kids by myself, owning two different homes and driving 35,000 miles a year for my career. I spent the last 10 years of my career driving with my right leg up on the car seat because of pain. Finally when I was forty nine years old it put me in a wheelchair within 6 months time. I went to the doctor and he told me I needed back surgery because I had a vertebrae out of place and that had caused a lot of extra bone to grow in there and it was pushing on the nerves. He also said that I needed a fusion but because I was so much younger than most of the people that have this problem, my spine was 30 years older than I was, It was not advisable to get the fusion that I needed. He said I would be back for multiple surgeries. I have been trying to walk around ever since with my back unfused. I spent 4 and 1/2 years after my two surgeries in excruciating pain with no pain medication or pain management during which time I developed ulcers from taking prescription strength ibuprofen and I also developed several other problems from stress. I seem to be allergic or hypersensitive to almost everything. Then I found a pain clinic that was managing my pain with opioids and physical therapy and they even put me through pain school to teach me a lot of tricks to manage my pain. It was at least good enough that I could go to the gym three days a week make my own meals and clean my own house. I had to get used to the fact that everything else was gone out of my life and I was doing that and for twelve years I never needed an increase in pain meds, I passed every drug test, and never did anything wrong, but my pain doctor announced that she had to reduce my opioids. Now I am back to excruciating pain my ulcers are back and I can not even walk across the street to the gym to do my workout. I can not drive a car anymore. I never sleep any more because of pain. I told my doctor this and she acts like she does not care. She practically begged me to get a second opinion. To top that off she lied to me about why she was doing this. It is not hard to figure that out when I read about this all over the place. Now I feel like I can not trust her any more. It is hard enough to cope with this disability without the government medeling in my medical treatment. They are not doctors. A lot of them don’t even have that much education Can we all get together and do something about this. No one else under stands this unless they are in excruciating chronic pain. Sometimes I wish they could all end up like this, just for long enough so they could understand.

I suffered through my children’s lives in so much pain that I couldn’t walk or even wipe my own self. Not knowing about better pain control options I took what my doctor gave me and gained 80 lbs on lyrica and put holes in my intestines with NSAIDs. I finally went to a doctor who wasn’t sadistic, and he started me on a fentanyl patch 100mcg and Norco for breakthrough pain. My current doctor is afraid of being sanctioned and is lowering my doses to the point where I am in unending pain again. I endured that before because I was ignorant of the options and was lied to by my doctor about the dangers of addiction. Most importantly, I am a single parent but my children are adults and almost out of college, and while I will hope to be around, the only way I endured before was for my children. Maybe when you vote you’ll think of the people who are suffering from the horrible plan to ignore the true problems that cause drug addiction: lack of hope for the future and lack of family support. There’s a reason why drug addiction is so prevalent in the low-income places, and it’s not moral inferiority!

Taking the lives of the people who are suffering with chronic pain just causes more suicide, more despair and people who turn to the illegal narcotic market!

I am so scared! I have had Interstitial Cystitis for 18 years and was doing pretty well on Tramadol, 50 mg twice a day. Before Tramadol, I had horrible pain in my bladder that felt like a charley horse muscle spasm. I was depressed because of the pain, was failing at work, losing weight, couldn’t sleep, my life was horrible.

Then Tramadol and I was able to get 95% of the Pain relieved and got my old life back. Suddenly in 2018, I can’t find a Doctor that will treat my pain, I have called all the Pain Management Doctors in my area, the primary care physicians, Urologists and so on. I guess I will have to get a Surgeon to take my bladder out.

This is major surgery and I hate to do it but I cannot go back to living in horrible pain again. I am still working, paying taxes, paying into Social Security, etc.

I NEVER abused Tramadol, sold it, broke any laws, got arrested, I took it as directed, and now I am going to be in pain shortly. I just dont understand what I did wrong. I have tried to be a good American citizen and now I am nothing but a drug addict. God help us all.

I have been suffering for about 10 years with chronic pain. I thought i was just getting older. I noticed I was losing my strength in my hands, and my legs seemed to be weak. About a week later I couldn’t use the restroom. I was in so much pain I couldn’t get out of bed.

I Finally had neck surgery and fusion C4-C7 but gained neuropathy, weakness and had some relief. However after the surgery I was told I had severe degenerative, disc disease. Prior to all of this I was hospitalized a few times with panic attacks. I have been taking my anxiety meds and pain meds exactly as instructed for the past 6 years.

Two years ago, I find out I have an incurable illness, more pain but I stayed on the same meds. I never wanted them to begin with. After taking them I had my life back and it was amazing. That is until a month ago when my pain medication dose was cut and I was told if you want the narcotics the anxiety meds have to go. What?

I suffer and have been hospitalized with panic attacks. I am on 2 meds for anxiety. Was also told I had to have injections or the pain meds would get cut down again. This is ridiculous. I do not have the money for this and my other doctor won’t clear me for injections due to my TERMINAL ILLNESS!

I am suffering because others abuse these drugs. I have been a clean patient for 6 years, I have abided by all instructions and now I am suffering once again. The meds that help me work part time, help me contribute to my home life, help me function are literally being taken because of a government agency? Sometimes I feel like Why should I take my other meds that prolong the inevitable when I cannot move or contribute anymore? By the way I am only 42 years old!

This is absolutely sickening to hear, I speak from strength about knowing first hand what debilitating pain is all about, 22 years of dealing with it. The DEA, the mindless morons who are more interested in taking drugs out of the system and the hell with those who suffer from chronic debilitating pain.

Where is the leadership in Washington, DC? Oh, that’s right, Mueller and Rosenstein are in control of DC. Do you ever notice how weak Congressmen and Senators are? I sure do, I watch them daily, nobody’s really capable of taking a solid position on anything, especially the rights of their constituency living in pain, it’s they who let us down. This should be the #1 law of the land.

To me, it seems like mostly everyone in government is willing to leave “legal” people in pain because it is much easier to lower the opioid supply than it is to punish those who are abusing these drugs. I thought with the level of pain medication I was on, mind you it wasn’t enough, but I could at least live out my life.

I am starting to wonder if “legal” pain medicine patients are going to join those who get their drugs illegally from street dealers.. At least that will keep the DEA doing what they should be doing, chasing illegals, not trying to lower the medication levels of those legally getting their medication from their pain doctors. I believe this is going to push a lot of “legal” pain medicine users into the streets for illegal drugs and NOBODY should ever be put in this situation.

This is absolutely sickening to hear, I speak from strength about knowing first hand what debilitating pain is all about, 22 years of dealing with it. The DEA, the mindless morons who they are – being more interested in taking drugs out of the system and the hell with those who suffer from chronic debilitating pain. Where is the leadership in Washington, DC?

Oh, that’s right, Mueller and Rosenstein are in control of DC. Do you ever notice how weak Congressmen and Senators are? I sure do, I watch them daily, nobody’s really capable of taking a solid position on anything, especially the rights of their constituency living in pain. This should be the #1 law of the land. Yet Congress is out to lunch, as usual.

To me, it seems like mostly everyone in government is willing to leave “legal” people in pain because it is much easier to lower the opioid supply than it is to punish those who are abusing these drugs. I thought with the level of pain medication I was on, mind you it wasn’t enough, but I could at least live out my life with lower pain. I am starting to wonder if “legal” pain medicine patients are going to join those who get their drugs illegally from street dealers.

At least that will keep the DEA doing what they should be doing, not trying to lower the medication levels of those legally getting their medication from their pain doctors. I believe this is going to push a lot of “legal” pain medicine users into the streets for illegal drugs and NOBODY should ever be put in this situation.

Today, my doctor told me all opioid medications are being lowered July 1st, 2018, this means my severe abdominal pain, not helped by 2 surgeries and multiple procedures, and a federal judge has ruled I am legally disabled, it means nothing. I was helped somewhat by the under-dosing of pain medication and will no longer be treated even with this amount of pain medicine, leaving me in extreme pain, I don’t even think my body will be able to deal with this.

I skipped a dose of my medicine today to see what it will feel like, I am in the worst pain ever, this is just terrible, as of July 1st, this is going to be the norm for me everyday as I will need to skip 2 doses daily because I will have less medicine. This will prevent me from eating because my pain is in my stomach, I can’t eat without a certain level of pain medication in my system, eating is something I’ve been told is necessary to sustain life and there are no other options for me, with the one exception of trying yet another procedure, which all the rest have failed to help.

Oh, and one more, my doctor says each time the pain gets too bad, I can go to the hospital for several days and there they can treat my pain, this treatment is apparently okay with the Feds. So, I get out of the hospital and 3 days later I have to go back? I don’t think so. What a waste of medical dollars when the correct amount of pain medication can do the same thing for me at my home. With my lower medication level, for me, this means starving to death because the pain keeps me from eating.

I wrote to President Trump and Gov. Scott (FL), but I don’t expect replies, at least not in the time I have left. One day I hope in this country, pain will be treated like any other disease, no, let me rephrase that, like the most important disease that it is, because once you have debilitating pain, you have little else to live for. Shame, shame, shame on the Federal and State governments for causing such great harm to their subjects.

I have suffered from scoliosis since I was 15 years old my curvature is quite severe my lower back curvature is the 80% and my upper back curvature is 40 I am now 58 and I have fought off taking pain medication all of my life until 5 years ago when the pain became unbearable and interfered with my daily life I finally went to a pain clinic and was put on a protocol of medication it didn’t take away all of my pain but made my daily life bearable in the past 5 years I have never asked my Dr for any more pain medication I have never taken more medication then I was prescribed in fact I have taken less then I was prescribed recently my pain clinic has moved an hour and a half away from where I live now that the new laws are coming in place I am having a hard time finding another Dr to treat me with the same protocol of medication now I am being told that if I do not agree to take injections I will not be able to get medication for my pain this makes no sense to me since the pain comes from the full length of my spine the pain I suffer moves around on a daily basis sometimes it’s my lower back sometimes it’s my upper back sometimes it’s my leg sometimes it’s my neck how is injections going to help that situation it is sad that I have to suffer injections or lack of medication because other people have been abusing drugs I have done nothing wrong yet I am being lumped together with people who have chosen to do the wrong thing where can I turn who’s going to help me what is going to happen to me

First, and more than 38 years ago, a trucking company from another country, operating legally here in the U.S., caused a head-on collision that ruined my life. I suffered a severe head injury, multiple severe injuries to my head, face, and upper body, and a C1-C2 fusion. The driver was plastered and illegally drunk. As a result, I have had daily constant severe chronic pain from for more than 38 years to date (In the same collision two friends, 19 & 20 years old were killed, and we did nothing wrong as facts and police report showed).

At first I was left/made to suffer the daily constant pain for more than ten years, trying everything that did nothing to ease my Pain except for strong narcotic medicine like Oxycontin or Morphine, but they would NOT allow me to use it. Every reason they gave me for me why I could NOT use it and why they said it would not work was nothing but total LIES! The pain in my neck, head, face, eyes, chest, shoulders, arms, and hands would get so bad that it would cause me to vomit.

After more than ten years of daily suffering and not being able to continue schooling or work, just at this point where I was finally starting to lose my mind from the daily non-stop severe Pain, the U.S. Government finally started to allow pain doctors to treat people like myself for whom nothing else worked to ease the pain than the best narcotic medicine for a person’s particular pain and body. The Pain Doctor and Morphine literally saved my life, and gave me at least somewhat of a life that I do NOT have at all without the Morphine. Without it I suffer with tortuous life-ruining, pain that is NOT at all worth living for.

Yet once again, people don’t care at all about our suffering, and are now punishing those of us with severe chronic pain because of drug addicts. I have nothing to do with them and don’t even know these people for whom I am now once again being punished and right here in the United States. I get NO Trial or anything. I am just made to suffer tortuous pain daily for nothing I have done. They care more for the lives of drug addicts than for the people with severe chronic pain. The U.S.

Any U.S. State or the U.S. Government can make us to have to suffer torturous pain. It is just the same as legalized torture by the U.S. Government against U.S. Citizens.

Yet after 25 years of taking a medicine I need to use, like Insulin is to a Diabetic, I am now denied the medicine I need for a decent quality of life. Morphine is a literal heaven-sent, miracle medicine, and a life-saver for many of us with severe Chronic pain. But the United States actually/obviously cares more about the lives of drug addicts than for those in pain. I have nothing about caring for drug addicts’ lives, as their lives should be cared for. My big question is why can’t the U.S. also care for the people like us and let us use what works the best and works well for many of us- I even can safely say for most of us!

I was NOT at all just handed morphine on a platte. No. I was actually tortured, made to suffer every day for more than ten years just to start being treated with Morphine. Then another ten years or so until I finally received a working dosage. Then 12 or 13 years passed, and the government punishes me again, making me suffer again for other peoples’ criminal wrongs. I am serious, the word evil comes to mind.

I found what worked, didn’t have one measly problem with what works, and nothing else works. Yet the DEA and the FDA just take away what works, and for NOT ONE sane, true, or honest reason. They insult my intelligence. Again, the best word for it is EVIL!

I have never asked for more medication, and I have also never abused or taken more than directed. As a matter of fact they gave me a patch, and I told them to lower my dose. I don’t know what to do, I FEEL STEREOTYPED, AND ITS DEGRADING! I CANNOT BEAR THE PAIN…ENOUGH! I wonder how many politicians are in pain like this and suffer? I’ve noticed suicides going up in chronic pain sufferers. I cry everyday but politicians don’t see me, so I guess I have to suffer. Will I be the next statistic? Its unbearable! This law has to change.

I have a knee replacement that went wrong so my doctor who did the surgery gave me a prescription for chronic pain meds but and I can’t get any meds.

Government agencies playing doctor is very unwise making those who need pain relief suffer. playing God or doctor is very strange

All this is going to do is force ppl to buy pain meds off the street, and not know what’s in it, that’s where some of the overdoses and deaths are coming from, it’s not fair to cut chronic pain sufferers off their meds

Kratom (made from the leaves of a tree in southeast asia) is helping a lot of people with chronic pain patients, legal in most states now but if the DEA gets their way it won’t be available like it is today without a prescription.

Has a class action suit begun in Canada because of this restriction on the use of opiods because ordinary people are being denied them? daily 24hr a day severe chronic pain, & at the point of deciding whether or not I continue fighting for my rights to have peace (am 71 years old), or do I just give up.
Opiods have been reduced to the point of ridiculous. suffer constantly… wake up from .pain every half hour at night,… the day I suffer, and suffer and suffer.

Are these new restriction fair to the ones suffering…never in my mind thought ever say the word “I would llke to sue” but right now if I am to survive I must fight for my right to live.

The excruciating pain, the anxiety, the fear, the lack of money to hire help in my home, everything seems to be much too much, Even pain clinic at the Ottawa Hospital in Ottawa has a 2 year+ wait. I would be open to clinical trials, whatever it takes, just to give me a few hours free of pain but that seems a very very long time away… They say you know when you are going to die (not that I truly want it) but this pain is killing me…. I think of my dead parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles…. I am cleaning all my 20+ yrs of paperwork… my cupboards, …. putting aside momentos to my children and grandchildren… in my own ways saying goodby to my family…. and it is not as if I have a choice. I even went as far as asking to be admitted to the Royal Ottawa Mental Hospital as a last hope. Alas, after 2 months there, the conclusion was that it was not mental (seems I am being referred to as highly intelligent – at last a positive), not suffering from a depression but that it is PAIN with no relief in sight

I’m 60 and have suffered with Fibromyalgia, degenerative disc disease, and Sciatica; been on Soc Sec disability for 10yrs. I’ve taken ms contin and Vicoden for 18 yrs and was told by my doc that the Govt is going to cut me off. Now I’m being forced to use med marijuana; it’s not helping, and I can’t afford it!

I, too, am in this mess. I am 75 years old and have severe degeneration of cervical and lumbar spine. I also have various pain and discomfort from nerve damage caused by various surgeries. Mine is a similar experience to many of the other contributors here.

What most galls me is that the very same people who made billions “addicting” us … will now make billions “treating” us. Kinda like investing “long” AND “short” on the stock market, a la “hedge funds.” And “yes,” I do believe that there is a movement afoot to rid “the system” of the disabled/old/”addicted”/useless feeders. While I vowed to myself to not commit suicide many years ago, I have decided to limit my interaction with all doctors and to passively allow Mother Nature to “have her way with me,” after denying her for these many many years through a variety of agonies. I’ve had my fill. I am a creature of a kinder and gentler time. I’ve had a full life. I am gravely disappointed that my life ends with this government visiting this EVIL upon us. I almost never think or even say “evil”. EVIL is exactly what it is !!!!

I have had chronic back pain for over a year . My primary OUT of fear for dea politics reffered me to pain management. Here I was able to get relief from oxycodone which works well with my brain as well as other meds I take. They tried to switch me onto 12-24 hour meds as the oxy wears off sooner after some time. All others have given me serious psychological and physical side effects whereas the oxycodone does not. Now I am being treated like a drug addict for just wanting to maintain a level of pain control that works. This is NOT for fun!

This is to function and have a quality of life, bend to reach things and enjoy the love of my life. My heart breaks to head that because of drug addicts I have to experience withdrawals while I already suffer from anxiety because their office never listened to my vms and tried to understand I cannot treat myself without guidance .

I can only be honest about what works and what does not . IF IT WAS BROKEN AND THE DRUG
Iain’t broken why BREAK A HUMAUN BEING IN PAIN? We suffer enough. Prayers to you all and that this opiate nonsense will be regulated according to the INDIVIDUAL not based on a law of scrutiny.

My husband hss adhesive arachnoiditis this is listed under rare disease. It is progressive and incurable. He also has degenerative disc disease and chronic kidney failure. Most people with this disease and stage are on total disability. My husband still works and his job is extremely physical. He has had fmla for flareups.he has only been able to work because pain management. Anyone can goggle this disease and see how terrible and debilitating this disease is.he has ben on stable dose for over 5 yrs no increase. No insurance company has forced him to taper and not slowly.

He has miss a ton of work and had to pay for more doctor appointments when were not bringing in as much money. I have called anyone who will listen in my state. No one is listening or cares.i asked bout pallative care and he is to high functioning so we have to wait till he is unable to work before he can get the compassion and care that he needs for his illness.until then insurance company and government has his ability to function and support his family hanging over his head. I can’t believe someone with a incurable progressive illness has to have this to deal with on top of devastating disease.

I have much to say, however, I’ts painful to type now. I’m an RN who was part of a pain management team for many years. I’m truly disappointed and ashamed of the behavior of so many members of the pain management community. My pain meds were cut so severely I’m not sure why I’m taking it. They treat me like an abuser at this horrible place I have to go to now. They are actually verbally and emotionally abusive, they change my words and instigate reasons to upset me so they can chart negatively. If I were to complain , their notes already document me as a problem. Because they have me appear questionable on paper, I can’t go anywhere else. This gets me so upset I go home in tears and it aggravates the painful muscle spasms I have.

On OxyContin for 15 years w/o incident. Not one problem, and no other meds, none. I was functional and no one ever knew I was taking it. I was not impaired in any way.

This pain group makes nasty comments about the ‘irresponsible dose’ I was taking. They took me from 120 mg Oxy ER twice daily to 15 mg twice a day, and 10mg oxycodone 3x a day. 87.5% decrease! I don’t need to tell any of you what I’m going thru. I don’t know how much longer I can take the pain, or all the problems from immobility. Aside from stasis ulcers I’m concerned about blood clots. I’m isolated and completely dependent for everything but I live alone and can’t afford help. There’s no reason for this. Punishing compliant patients who clearly have positive outcomes from this medication. The same doctors who prescribed it now behave as if only a negligent doctor would do so. Such hypocrisy.

Truth is, there’s no way I can get thru another fall and winter like this. I don’t know what’s going to happen to me, but I am truly worried and desperate for help. I won’t go into all my injuries in addition to an undiagnosed progressive muscle disorder. It’s been given many names but not a single doctor is interested (for 40 yrs) in at least trying to figure it out. When I was in a serious MVA, I developed new areas of chronic pain and it accelerated the original problem a lot and it continues to deteriorate. Hope everyone finds some relief, and that your not trying to manage alone. Take care. It took 2 hrs to type this :-)

I would be interested in joining or helping to look into some type of legal intervention. We can’t share contact info so I don’t know how that would work

Have u documented this treatment and have u filed a complaint with ur state medical board i would not be treated with such disrespect without womeone paying for it inexcusable

This is my story I had breast cancer 15 years ago and I had the common treatments chemo and radiation. In 2015 my cancer returned to every bone in my body especially my ribs and long bones. I suffer bad pain but I know it will get worse in the future. So the pain management doctor I originally had when my cancer came back used to take good care of me he was always asking if I needed it increased and I always replied no. The reason I always replied no I told him is that I know my pain will get worse in the future and I want the meds to be as a effective as possible. Recently my onocologist tested me because my housekeeper misplace or took Xanax prescription for my sleep. He heard about it and tested me with a urine sample and said I had nothing in my system. Well maybe I didn’t that day sometimes I don’t take it if the bank pain is not that bad but a lot of times I have to take it but because I didn’t have it in that urine test he cut me off. I have doctors in my family that called him and talk to him and in two days he turned me over to a pain management doctor. That pain management doctor said well either you have an implant or you’ll get no medicine. I’ve been cut on so much I didn’t want to have an implant so I got angry and told him where to put his prescription of 25 mg of fentanyl after being on morphine er every 12 hours in 15 mg oxycontin every 4 to 6 hours. My onocologist cut me off cold turkey and gave me nothing to wean off and the new pain management doctor gave me no choice and because I got angry he said he wouldn’t even do the surgery to put the implant in me so I guess I’ll suffer till I die. That’s my story. Oh p.S my new pain medicine is Excedrin Migraine

I cannot list my accidents there are over twenty and it is just too lengthy. I can tell you it began at age 10 it has left me crippled. I am seeking disability at age 61 and finding that too is for end of life people. Well I just joined that group myself, the end of life.

Pain IS a sickness not just and infirmity. Well that can be construed as the same perhaps. However when a person lives over 45 – 50 years with constant never ceasing pain they become sick. Sick of living , no joy in Anything it is just a constant never ending battle to make it through the day! To function, to motivate to be productive becomes impossible without help. I am one that was in the opioid crowd that was seeing a pain doctor doing everything right, pill counts always right, passed every u.a. except the first one which I told them it had hydrocodone in it. They did not send that one in though, till the Next u.a. and then the pee lady “calls me herself” and told me I was kicked off my u.a. was dirty with hydrocodone. Because of her bias. Well that one was straightened out. But I fear it will happen again and it just proves the bias people have. When they are healthy have strong bones never done anything more than stub a toe. They think we are all phonies just wanting to get high. I was on a drug that does not produce euphoria and technically Not an opioid but a synthetic. I don’t like opiates! They really don’t work for any length of time! I take one oxycodone 10 mg. every four hours now and it does not get me through one hour if it helps at all. Sure that will get better, but when? Six months? I think that is a good estimate but maybe a year at my age and skeletal system I don’t know how long it will take!? I have been here and done that time after time. You can’t just jump off a synthetic to an opiate. It is next to impossible, death defying. My PA is so in-experienced I asked her about a methadone detox once , she said “Well try a 10mg cut every 4 days.” Could have had a conniption the stupidity of this woman that is prescribing schedule 2 narcotics. One nurse will not even talk to me since that happened, it has been four years and I have not seen her since the day we discussed that. Why? I did not jump up and down get abusive or call anyone an idiot. I just said “it won’t work it will kill me” I asked her once “Am I becoming a methadone addict”? “No when you take it for pain you are just dependent on it” What is the difference? Yes methadone is a very hard drug but it served the purpose of 5 or 6 other pills which I am now having to take again. Neurontin makes a bumbling boob out of me, I stopped it once before on this clinic and it just made the PA hold a grudge because I was handing her back bottles with the pills still in them, three different times. I have no insurance but I go to my primary Dr. once a week now with a new problem, or an old one re-occurring. But the pain clinic doesn’t care. I asked “please just increase the oxycodone long enough for me to adjust and then I will work back down.” “No we just gotta keep pushing on through” We? She won’t fit in my pocket, or on my shoulders, wish she could, I wish people could feel for one day what I have lived over two thirds of my life then maybe they would begin to understand.
This whole CDC guideline dilemma which was intended for primary physicians only and has been misconstrued and gotten so twisted it is , well I cannot put words to that. They had me convinced there were new laws! “It’s not us, it’s the government” she said. When Debra Houry said herself and quoting, “it is not intended to take away the dr’s decision making” and “it is not a law rule or regulation” There is no way to describe what has happened just because a bunch of dope fienders get stupid and kill themselves and the people just trying to live their lives as a functioning and productive citizen pay the price. Suicide, I think about it every single day now. It haunts me like a demon on my shoulder saying “yeah! do it stop the pain!”

For the first time after being on opiates many years and at the same level for most of those years, I am now faced with a reduction of them that will not control my pain. The government is threatening pharmacies, doctors, insurance companies……anyone involved with the legitimate prescribing of the best chronic pain relievers known to science…..opiates. Because of the foolishness of those who used it for some other reason other than pain and died or were made ill, this is no different than people who drink too much. Yet the government in its forever idiotic way of thinking, banned alcohol under the Volstead Act and booze went underground and more importantly, made organized crime rich. Now with the legitimate use of opiates being denied, it too will go underground ; but here the risk to the chronic pain patient becomes serious……bad drugs made with the wrong ingredients and expertise of the drug companies will kill many people. But your government doesnt give a damn; face it. I am now going to find out what my life, such as it may be, will be like with my already low dosage of oxycontin being cut in half since my insurance company, Anthem Blue Cross, is dragging their feet requesting things they already have to stall and stall and stall; I have heard from a pain doctor that the federal government is coercing anyone in the legitimate opiate chain of commerce, now including insurance companies into not filling opiate prescriptions. I paid and continue to paid large premiums for that which they now deny me………ANTHTHEM BLUE CROSS;if you are insured by them , watch out!!!! I am ashamed of the country I was born and raised in and have nothing but contempt for our congress, many of which belong in federal prison for the enormous corruption so many of them are involved in. I can guarantee you this: the congressmen and senators will still get their opiates. I detest this bunch of scum that now “governs” this country and can only hope all of them get hit with intractable, chronic pain so that their lives will be like the one I now have to live. To hell with them. They are disgusting. t

We do need a class action suit. The hydrocodone I have taken responsibly for 20 years are not working, I know they say they have just removed the coloring but I have heard it from too many sources including pharmacists and PA. I have suffered with chronic pain for over 20 years and have been able to MANAGE it with pain meds, I have never abused them because I need them. Abusers had a choice at some point, those with chronic pain DO NOT HAVE A CHOICE! Where can we go for help?! We need a class action, or must we wait until thousands of pain suffers start committing suicide.

My daughter suffers. And I believe everything you say. Government is abusive. And yes, members of congress will get their pain meds.

I was treated by a Pain Management Doctor successfully for 15 years for chronic Avascular Necrosis in all of the major joints, calcium deficiency that has caused Spinal Stenosis, and my left hip needs to be replaced but will not happen until it breaks. This doctor has taken away all of the meds that kept me going, in the bat of an eye, without any remorse. My life is over. I worked hard for 23 years paying taxes. Now I am being thrown away. I pray that God will relieve the pain. Our country is broken.

If folks in severe pain need what they know works; why are pain management who take a doctor’s creed to help these folks; not helping them? This is Abuse of a Degree; this is Fraud; if they are depriving these folks of the relief they need.

I live iN Portland OR and have suffered from various arthritis and other illness where the pain is unbearable. Three yrs ago I had a pathological fracture of femur from taking prednisone for severe arthritis and their were many complications. Both legs are constricted 30% and I could not straighten them if a bulldozer were pulling them straight I have had every treatment and therapy that has made them worse. I was Executive Director of Substance Abuse Center for years until I had to go on disability because of this I live in total pain bone on bone and leg constriction all day Seven ortho surgeons said no to nee replacement operation my case is too difficult. Finally found excellent surgeon and he too out rod from femur and replaced knee but leg would not straighten and I have to have torturous pt and wear a painful brace. pain is so bad I WANT to kill myself but my faith and love for my family keep me pressing on. I want to sue the govt for torture because that is what this is. They will give drug addicts methadone so they don’t have withdrawal AND can live normal lives but a 59 year old women that has contributed so much to society is now in unbelievable pain – Some days I JUST CRY AND SCREAM ALL DAY. Wont any lawyer or firm take on this case. Right now I am in a Skilled Nursing Facility after surgery and going thru such pain in everyday life nonetheless the painful Physical Therapy. Please help me.

The stories I’m reading are heartbreaking! I agree Dr took an oath you never cause harm do any patients. I agree with one of the people commenting that animals are not being treated with more humane methods than humans. I’ve been in two car wrecks. One wreck hit by drunk driver doing about 65 70 and we were sitting still at a stoplight. I had a very good doctor then and he took sat me down he said your type injuries will be maintenance for the rest of your life.

I took 5 mg hydrocodone since my car accidents. I never abused them I never sold them I didn’t drink alcohol I took care of myself the best I could being on the medication. I was also prescribed a mild Xanax to help me sleep at night and that was also taken from me. And now I sleep maybe hour and a half two hours a night. I tried many different kinds a treatments from acupuncture to massage therapy to Chiropractic and having them lay hands on me at church. And of all the things I tried the lowest dose hydrocodone you can get works for me and the Xanax keeps my anxiety at Bay and I’m able to sleep.

Now that I don’t have my medications anymore, my limp is way more noticeable. I have one leg is longer than the other due to the accident. Now I’m having a harder time finding work because people know I’m injured. So I don’t know what we’re supposed to do. I understand it’s not the Doctor’s choice or most of them but I think they should stand up for the patient that’s who they went to school to take care of not the government. When you hear about young kids that are injured having medication taken away from them and elderly people in nursing homes having medications taken away from them that is just cruel not to mention people like me. And I have friends who were in the military who were hurt that had to take him from them that is cold they fought for our country we should be taking care of them.

I just pray that someone will stand up that it can make a difference and I will send it with him and I hope everybody else will too this is wrong what they’re doing to us. I’m only 52 and I had planned on working hopefully until I was 60 and then I might have to go on disability but I didn’t want to have too many sooner the necessary. I also play music and have my whole life and love playing it to make people feel happy. And now that’s going to become difficult. Taking two medications away from me that you won’t find any death records from somebody taking those two as prescribed. I feel like I’m a victim. When a celebrity dies and the word opiate comes up they’re not telling the people unless you read it what all they were taking. Nine times out of 10 it was a cocktail of stuff that would kill anybody.

Prince didn’t die because he was taking three 5 mg hydrocodones a day. He was taking Fentanyl along with other pain medications the same as Tom Petty was. And I love both of those musicians but I don’t know what that has to do with my prescriptions. I’m not taking anything remotely that strong. I’m taking enough to get by so I can work and somewhat enjoy life and play music. I just been to this doctor for 10 years and never had any problems and when they took the medication for me they acted like they didn’t even know me anymore. That put me in a bad position not to mention I lost faith and trust in our medical system that they can just kick you out that easily and the doctor never even talk to me he did it through his nurses after 10 years. There’s really something wrong with this whole deal. I’m so sorry for all the suffering going on the people that I’ve read their stories tonight. I’m not here fighting for just me. I’ve read many stories so I’m fighting for all of us. God bless you all and I prayed there’s an answer soon. And the answer should be what works for the individual. Thank you Chris

I just want to add, if anyone has found a lawyer willing to start a class action lawsuit, please post the information here so we can all participate!

I am not sure that the government cares about overdoses for the ones we hear about on the news that have overdosed are those who took street drugs not prescribed ones and from the comments I am reading those who have been on long term pain management who are not abusing their medications and only want to live w/out pain and function as normally as possible are now being treated as drug addicts, being refused their medications by pharmacists who are now acting like medical doctors making up lies as to why they can’t fill such as saying they are out of said medicine or claiming it’s a insurance issue and when you find out that’s not true they blame DEA or say they are out of stock and it will be a week before they get it in which leaves patient w/out medication which could be life threatening in and of itself.

The pain regiment should be between the doctor and patient and no one else as long as the drug laws are followed that are already on the books. It’s not the pharmacists job to override the doctors orders or the governments job. There will be suicides but not because of street overdoses but because of chronic pain issues that many have that will go untreated, so sad.I have chronic pain and finding it more and more difficult to get the right doses of medicine for just when the doctor finds what helps the rules get changed again and I’m so tired of the merry go round and though my faith rules out suicide I have been in such terrible agony at times that it has entered my mind. why isn’t the government talking about those whose medications are being taken away who are committing suicide?

Is this so called opioid crises really about saving lives? Those that choose street drugs need help with addiction but those who have been on a medication regiment for pain just to function daily and who follow doctor’s orders should never be generalized and thrown in with heroin,cocaine,meth or whatever their choice of drug is to get high. There are hardworking people who need legitimate pain relief who follow their doctors pain management plan and who should not be made to suffer needlessly because of those who choose to abuse drugs. Makes me think there is an agenda here and it’s not truly about saving lives.

I have a brain tumor and cancer. My tumor is inoperable. (Actually, they can take it out but I would not only be left with life altering deficits, surgery could actually make the pain worse). I have followed all of the required protocols. Monthly visits to the pain management clinics which include a monthly UA. I have undergone further, unnecessary tests. (MRIs, etc. that are a repeat of the same tests done by my neurologist and oncologist).

Over the last two months, my dosage of pain med has been cut in half, leaving me unable to participate in life, due to the pain. I have had to stop working and volunteering. I can barely do my own grocery shopping. My independence is slipping away.
Yes, I am dependent on my medications! They do not get me high. I do not abuse them. But they do allow me a better quality of life.
How can this happen? People would be jailed for allowing their pets to suffer like this!

Apparently, those who suffer chronic pain (regardless or the reason) just need to ‘suck it up’!
I am not ready to give up and just lie down and die!

I have a benign brain tumor. Had surgery, tumor returned 8 mo later & spread to where surgery is not an option now. Did radiation treatments to stop tumor from growing, which thank God worked.🙏 But I lost the vision in my right eye.

Headaches I have are in the area where surgeon placed 3 titanium plates. (Right side eye area & above) Neuro doctor put me on norco, & referred me to pain management doctor. Was able to go back to work, and have not missed 1 day of work in 8yrs.

Then I had a tooth ache for about 2wks waiting to see dentist. Couldn’t sleep for the tooth pain. I took 1 norco tablet each day more than I was prescribed. Had tooth surgery, put me to sleep to do it. Tooth surgeon prescribed me pain meds, didn’t know I wasn’t supposed to take them until I went back to pain management doctor, but I told them up front at the reception desk. Pain management doctor came in to see me, and went off on me. Saying I should’ve known better. Which I didn’t, but evidently I signed paper work when I first started seeing him. Anyway he said he can’t help me anymore, and released me.

Since then I’ve missed 6 days of work because of the headaches. Been trying ice packs throughout the day, and acetaminophen. Severe withdrawals with no help from anyone, & nowhere to turn for help. Don’t know what I’m gonna do.

Corrine: you are the patient everyone needs to pay attention too. You just proved what I’ve been sounding the alarms about through my interactions via media & cp grps. Having seen the repercussions of cdc g/l & policy 1st hand from 2 perspectives: lost a parent recently to cancer & I’m currently in work up (biopsy, diagnostics) due to a suspicious mass. The treatment regarding pain control regimen was strange & inadequate at times for my parent. I’m not dismissing the cpp because I’ve been in PM for nearly 16 yrs due to multiple ongoing health problems. My point is this: when the war on PM began (&not overnight either); no one EVER quesioned cancer related care & treatment becoming a casualty in the over hyped-up war on drugs! AND now the stories are being reported all across the country. Its barbaric & inhumane! Wake up America & meet your new Dr> “Dr.Gov!” Policy is NOW being called into question & even though change will happen- it will take time to find common sense minded champions to our cause-within government! Not an easy task by any means.

I totally agree with all the above…..
I have DDD as well as FJD and have had 4 abdominal surgeries..
People don’t understand when you wake up every day and say to yourself ” today is not going to be a good day”. I went from being an alcoholic (Just trying to get rid of the pain) to being a productive member of society. If relief is available, why not use it? Because we have addicts overdosing everyday?! That’s their choice!! We, as chronic pain patients have no choice! If the government wants me to go back to being a deadbeat and collecting disability, them that’s what will happen. If I don’t commit suicide first. I’m tired of being lumped into the heroin addict crowd. I feel for them but, I am not an addict. If one of them had to live with my pain for a single day, there wouldn’t be this war!! I hope they have a serious injury and the Dr. Tells them ” take some Tylenol”….. I guarantee things would be different. I’m NOT an addict!! They all say we can’t live life pain free…I understand that, even with my meds I still have pain. But, at least I’m able to go to work and be productive. Social Security can’t handle whats getting ready to come….

I have thought of taking my life. my wife is the reason I don’t, my back pain is a result of a head first fall in 1986 onto a cement parking lot from over 22 feet. Mu back turned into a curled slinky.
There is no fix and pain meds are what i depend on .
These “QUACKS” that want to deprive us that need us from the medication er need have suffered killing pain that make me and others want to end the pain permanently.
I have a social worker that is trying to help me find me find a good doc. But the ass wipes that are using the meds to get high are wrecking my and your life . Another side effect of my fall is Parkinson’s disease. Just typing this has taken me nearly three hours.
My life has turned into a sad existence.

I just think that it is all so sad. So many of us in chronic pain suffering (many of us severely) because of all the abuse. What can we do to prove we are in chronic pain and we are not drug addicts?

I have two severe pain problems. One is celiac neuropathy-small fiber neuropathy. I also have avascular necrosis in my right upper arm bones. Now the ball and socket shoulder joint is no more. It is two very fragile and flat bones with nerves sandwiched between them.I am supposed to have surgery on my arm in August or September but I am wondering if I can survive. One thing that concerns me is that if I have any complications my siblings will want me to have assisted suicide someway or another so I will not bother them. I am tired.

I used to have dreams but now that my doctor is chewing me out for not walking on feet that feel more like skin having a bunch of barbed wire pressing on every tiny nerve cell and along with that being soaked in scalding water.One thing I found in research is that this opioid war is merely because of the war against terrorism Opioids come from Afganistan and so our government is trying to cut their production. To keep the media from reporting that the war is killing people in the USA because of suicides from pain they created an opioid epidemic to put the blame on persons who have extreme pain.

I used to think God loved me but I do not believe that anymore. God only loves the rich, the physically strong and those who do not need pain meds. Anyway, that is my story.

I’m an chronic pain patient doctor’s have tryed everything already,even had 4 major surgeries was told if all failed they could put me on strong opioid,guess what all failed but they not only won’t put on strong opioid’s in mg’s and amount’s enough to control at least 1/2 my severe great pain,but lowered the opioid i’m on knowing the severe great chronic pain has reduce my health so bad, I’m dying from the great chronic pain alone, doctor’s know this and are letting it happen, won’t even gave me what I was taken in 2015, and the CDC was ok with this, I’m dying don’t know if I have days, or weeks doctor can’t control my blood pressure kept telling them before they lowered my rx pain medicine’s i didn’t have any of these problems, going to get lawyer, write the president because I’m dying have nothing to lose, no human should have to die in such pain, knowing the doctor had medicines that would have helped, saved them.

I am 70 year sol and have had back surgery once. My lower lumbar spine is in severe need of surgery. Three specialists have told me that if they operate I will either die or be permanently disabled. The surgeon placed me on hydrocodone to heal the nerves that were greatly damaged during surgery. I was then found later that both my knees are bone to bone. The doctor can do nothing except a total knee replacement on both knees.

I am still trying to work a full time job with 60 hours a week and can hardly function. the knee surgeon did a scope of my knee and I had to go back for a post op visit. The surgeon at that time gave me a script for one time hydrocodone. Now I was seeing a pain management doctor at this time who had given me 2 hydrocodone pills a day which will hardly suffice for my pain. I also have an autoimmune disease to where it makes things very difficult for me to take any pother medications. I am anaphylactic so any medicine that I take, if ti works, stays on my list of safe medications.

I was never seeing this knee surgeon again until I was ready for knee surgery and I am under a contract at my work to where it will not be ended until June of this year so I cannot leave or else I will lose all my retirement. Since I was no longer needing of this doctor until surgery this would be the last time I saw him and he knew I was in pain so he volunteered to give me pain meds for this one time. I did not tell him I was seeing a pain management doctor because I was told not to tell any doctor I was seeing pain management from a pain management doctor. I was not trying to do anything wrong but just never though too much about it. During the time before my visit to the pain management doctor my tooth broke off way down in the gum line and the pain is excruciating.

I finally found a dentist who would take me and this dentist will have to cut out this tooth with about 12-15 stitches. He gave me pain meds (20 of them) for the time before and after he was pulling my tooth. I took the pain meds to the pharmacy where she saw the script filled from my surgeon and the script fro my pain management doctor and she turned me into the DEA.

Then came my appt with my pain management doctor who took me into a room and his office staff put me in the witness stand. I was grilled and interrogated for almost one hour. I was not allowed to have anyone in the room and they went all the way back to 5 years ago and were talking about things I never knew about and neither did they. What it all boiled down to was the fact that they caught me by surprise and they did not accept my answers. I had totally forgotten about my script from my surgeon and told them about it whenever they asked. That script called for 1-2 hydrocodone every 6 hours and that worked out well for me and controlled my pain. My pain management doctor had called my surgeon telling him I was abusing pain meds. Then my pain management doctor called my dentist and told them the same thing.

Then the pain management doctor got in touch with my primary care doctor and told her that I was also abusing them all because of that one single fill from my surgeon. I have now lost my dentist, my surgeon and been reported to the DEA at the age of 70. I cannot get any doctor now because my name is one the list with the DEA. When I was taken into the room at the pain management doctor’s office I was grilled and interrogated for one hour. I was accused of things I never did and called a liar and told that I have to trust my pain management doctor who is doing not enough to stop the pain especially since his pain dosage was based on a bad back and I have additional problems now of both knees, cervical spine and now this tooth which is hurting horrid.

Since my name is now listed with the DEA, that means I will lose my job as it is strictly a “secret” type of work field. After I degraded, humiliated and belittled for almost an our they then told me that I have not proved to be trustworthy. Now I have never done this kind of thing before and this was an total innocent thing that I never thought about at the time but those pills were used for my tooth which is in unbearable pain. I felt as if I had taken the stand in a trial and I was judged and tried and found guilty without a jury.

I was allowed no one on my side in this room but she had the entire office staff on her side along with the doctor who refused to talk to me. I was then told that I can see no dentist or specialist for anything uynless I go through my pain management doctor to make sure they do not prescribe any opiates so that meant the dentist will have to cut out the tooth and take stitches with the pain management doctor’s approval and it will have to be done with those “two” hydrocodone a day. They told me that with pain management there is no line between acute pain and chronic pain and that acute pain must be treated with chronic pain medication. That means no doctor can give me any medication for any pain or illness without going through the pain management doctor.

I refuse to accept this as there are now five operations I must have. One for my cervical spine, one for each knee, one for my tooth and one for my lumbar spine if I can even find a doctor who will do it in the first place. That means I have to control all this pain with 2 tablets of hydrocodone a day. Now I do have fentanyl patches but all they help is my back pain and not my tooth or my knees. I asked the pain doctor in the beginning to take away one of the fentanyl patches and give me one extra hydrocodone but he refused. Just two hydrocodone is now alleviating my pain whatsoever.

I have a hereditary autoimmune disease which makes it very difficult for me to do and take a lot of medications. I am upset because I was interrogated for almost an hour. I was tried and found guilty without being able to explain anything and when this office went back from 5 years ago then they needed to go to the laws that applied 5 years ago and not hte laws now because I do not know what happened 5 years ago and they did not accept any of my answers on anything but just called me a liar and told me that I have to place trust in my pain doctor.

Well, after he called everyone and I just lost my job and all my doctors I find that somewhat difficult to do right now. The only thing I can do is call them back and just leave the pain management program and I still would not be able to get any pain medication from anyone. That is all right because I will not be able to take care of any of my medical issues either/.

What this law is doing is killing senior patients. All us who have worked hard all our lives and have raised a family and contributed to the economy are now trash they want to kill and see in pain. They do not care about the elderly and those of us in pain. I wanted to tell them to place a tattoo on my arm and tell me which door to go through to be gassed as that is how I felt. As though it were the holocaust and I was in the way and did not make this world substantially better with my presence in it. This new opiate law that our states sold all of us out on just so they could collect money from the Justice Department is selling their own residents down the river just to gain dollars from us all.

Us who are elderly mean nothing to the federal system except money they are spending on us so that plain and simple want us dead. This is their LEGAL way to do so.I will not go have y tooth removed with only a local as it is way too bad and no pain mesa afterward will make it extremely difficult so I will most likely die from blood poisoning before anything else. Now I work a full time 60 hour a week job and the pain management doctor een told me that they will have to have me monitored? I have decided not to go there and I refuse to be spoken to as this office did any other time. This has never happened to me before so I have decided to jsut suffer with the pain.

It will definitely affect my health and my frame of mind as it has already. Do I know f I can make it through? Doubtful but I will die trying. I a a chronic pain user and not a drug addict as I was treated. What I do not understand is that a true and seasoned drug addict already know what the laws state and they have already found a way around them and the only oens who are paying for this new law on opiates are us who are trying to do things legal. This does not help us whatsoever and the true drug addicts have already found a way to skirt the law which makes us who are innocent and need help be the ONLY ones who are paying for this new opiate law. This law give sthe physicians the right to do anything and say anything and accuse us of anything they wish at anytime and we as the patients have no rights to protect ourselves as we are already turned into the DEA without given our rights to a fair sentence?

We are being accused so let it be in front of a jury and let the jury decide if we are drug addicts instead of the people who are sitting behind a desk making decisions on a chronic pain patients life. There is absolutely nothing fair or right about this law. The only ones who will pay are people like me who may have made an innocent mistake and now my job is gone and my doctors are not available for me all because an energetic and eager doctor was willing to condemn me before he talked to me. This means I cannot get care at a dental office without going through a pain management doctor for everything that happens to my body? NO!!!

I will not accept this so I will go off any and all opiates and the script will be mailed back to the doctor via registered letter. I hae never brokent he law ever and have led a realtively normal life but because I get sick in my. older years I have to pay for the acts of those who are true and dedicated users and placed into the same category. My life is ruined. My job is lost and I am tried and sentenced by a doctor who doe snot even have half the story right. I am frustrated and angry and have never been judge as guilty without being able to prove innocence and left in a doctors office crying my eyes out and just penned into a room with no way out. They told me that I have to trust the doctor? For what? The doctor would never listen to me in the first place and has called me a liar each and every time I have been to see him so where is the trust in me? This can work two ways and it is not just the doctors way. Maybe that is why he continues to get malpractice claims against him and refused to pay the last one. I may decide to file charges against him and may not. Not sure if it is worth my while to do so. He has taken away my livelihood and way to live a normal life.

All this opiate bill is is for the states to get richer as the doctors and that pharmacists get a kickback whenever they turn a person in they get money as sort of a reward so your life is in the hands of a pharmacist who knows nothing about you just because you went in to fill a script or that pain management doctor that we all have to see instead of our family doctor who is the one who knows the most about us. Now it all boils down to everyone seeing a pain management doctor for any kind of pain medication when you are suffering from severe pain. Then comes that infamous urine testing that is plain and simply illegal and we are not informed by the doctors office that we can reject that being done but are told it is mandatory before you can get your medications so we are all led like a sheep to slaughter.

When one becomes elderly and still lives a productive life they do not deserve to be treated like a drug addict and trash. Take the circumstances as they are and act like one has some sense. No doctor is above me or better than me because they are a doctor. They could never do the job I do and that would make me above them. They all surely act as if they are. As my story ends they still give me a script for the same amount of pain medication as I originally had after going through all that agony and making my sick so that doctor still did not listen to me. He still refuses to adjust my medication. That cannot be any rapport with any doctor or trust built when that doctor will not listen to me the patient.All these pain doctors need to cut that umbilical cord they are attached to and listen to the patient and then and only then maybe will all this stop. This all is not stopping illegal drugs or overdoses from happening burt stopping patients like me who are chronic pain sufferers from getting their meds so we will be in great pain for the rest of our lives.

I just happen to think that absolutely no one in this world deserves to be in this kind of pain if it can be prevented. I made a small mistake that I just never thought about and never knew. I mean if you are not a drug addict then how does one know what the drug law says? The only ones who know that are the hardened addicts who have found their way to get around the law so the only ones paying for this are the people who need their pain meds to survive. I doubt that I will survive too long in this kind of pain but I a ready for it to all end with whatever way it does end. After all this is what the federal government wants in the first place is or the sick and elderly to die and then they will not be out the money on us and it will be saved for the future generations. That is their sole purpose in all this in the first place. I pray for those who are worse off than myself and pray they are able to find help. I will not look for any for any reason but just take things one day at a time and just continue to say I am feeling fine. Then when it is time for me to go it was what the federal government wanted in the first place and I will not be alone.

You have not yet begun to see the conclusion of what the CDC and the DEA has done by passing this new opiate law but in order for them to get it passed in all states they had to pay off these state with over 8 billion dollars so they had to give the states money in order for them to comply. This money given means your state does not care about you or about me but it is all about the money. Certainly it is not our health and well being. Chronic pain sufferers beware as all this has just begun and it will get worse unless we find someone who files suit against the federal government, the CDC and the DEA and steps up to the plate to help all of us who are constant chronic pain sufferers.

SJ, I am so sorry to hear what all you’re going thru and many like you and myself included. Maybe writing your senator will help.n=I suggest all write their senators, I did and heard back from them. There is a site for complaints and maybe legal action.
I hope it helps.

Dear fellow chronic pain family,
First off I want to say I feel immense sadness that we are all going through this horrific ordeal. After being on 2 different opiates for 7 years, yesterday I got a letter from my insurance company of complete denial of continuing coverage of the meds. Yes for 7 years they were fine with me being on them but as soon as 2018 hit they changed their policies “in order to keep my health and safety blah blah blah”…I am in my mid 40’s and am inoperable due to 2 rare blood clotting disorders.

I cannot take prednisone because I’m diabetic and it makes my sugar go over 400. Any NSAIDS are out because of the bleeding disorders. The meds made my life BEARABLE.

I could get out of bed on a good day and get my groceries, cook a meal and do light housework for a few hours before a long hot shower and bed rest. I have fibromyalgia, c5 & c6 look collapsed with major spurs and spinal impingement which has been causing EXTREME pain in my right arm and total numbness in hands, etc., congenital spinal stenosis, 2 hemorrhaged discs in lumbar region with spurring all the way from neck to tailbone, rotator cuff tendinitis with a rock growing under my cuff, barely any knee cartilage left with femoral tracking disorder in both knees, they lock up and I can’t move, pes equinos in left leg, Achilles tendinitis with a HUGE spur in left foot, bursitis in that area, shards have broken off the spur and I have major scar tissue in the back of right foot, and I think that’s all!

Oh major depressive disorder & panic disorder/agoraphobia which I’m being bugged to get off the benzo that saved my life 13 years ago!!! I lost over 100 pounds and that didn’t help at all and I LAUGH at what they recommend the doctors to tell us. Try Tylenol or Advil. Um really? You don’t think we’ve tried that BEFORE schedule II meds?

Try counseling, accupressure/puncture, chiropractor, try to find a meaningful life despite the pain. What about withdrawals? Shouldn’t it be legal to properly get us off the junk THEY put us on?!?

I had an insurance snafoo that left me a week without mscontin and that was a rollercoaster ride into the bowels of hell!!! I mean never mind sneezing til your ribs ache, throwing up, having to take immodium like crazy because your bowels have liquified, eyes running, too much saliva in mouth, goosebumps, hot cold hot cold, feeling like your skeleton is made of metal and is grinding into your internal organs and 500 lbs of wet cement has been poured on you and that’s the physical.

The mental is horrendous, you want to pull off your skin, nightmares, RLS, can’t sleep, ETC. What if we had the power to touch those who had the power to CHANGE this and give them our pain for a day, a week, a month! My meds were the rope I was hanging on. Now I’ll be bed bound. I think of you all as I/we go through this undeserved hellish treatment. I’m scared :'( just a rant from a middle aged woman who feels just about done.

Limited to 100 words. Here goes: Am on the Fentanyl patch (19 yrs.) Was burned 3rd degree, 22% of my body. I ended up with muscle myopathy. RECENTLY TOLD I HAVE MYOTONIC DISEASE. LAST MONTH MY PAIN DR CUT MY DOSE OF PAIN MEDS. LAST WEEK HE TOLD ME UNDER THE NEW FDA GUIDELINES (80 MG TOTAL MORPHINE equivalency/day–also includes cancer patients) my patches are higher dose than the new guidelines.

So I would have to stop my pain patches (the pain would kill me). Mike Dewine and Governor Kasich have it all wrong. They should be brought up on charges for political torture of those with disabilities. They are killing us. Yet, no one is willing to stand up for us (the compliant pain mgmt patients). Until we ban together, marches, news coverage etc. we will be the unintended casualties (that the government will be happy to write off). WHERE ARE THE LAWYERS FOR AMERICANS WITH DISABILITIES. SUPREME COURTS HEAR OUR CRY. MY ATTORNEY GENERAL AND GOVERNOR ARE KILLING ME.

Then help me. I’m writing my local newspaper, TV stations and my sister is talking to the Attorney General of Arkansas. I’m trying to get everyone on my pain site to help and write letters of their own. I hurt with my meds and now there cut in half do I’m pretty well down most of the time. Any ideas or anything you can help me do would be great

I’m very mixed on this. I have lost both a husband and a daughter to overdose. My husband, I now believe to have been a suicide and the other a bad combination of medications but both were addicts and both received from the same doctor. A doctor who also tried to give two of my other teenagers, both, 15 at the time he tried to give them Norco and Soma and one of them a younger daughter who flat told him “I don’t want Norco or soma I want ibuprofen” after he asked if she wanted them, but he still prescribed them and I had to throw a fit about it to get that torn up and get her ibuprofen. This was also the same doctor who had put me on 100 mcg of Fentanyl for chronic pain and upon forgetting to put one on once I experienced what I now know to have been withdrawals. I only realized what was happening to me after a second time of it happening and some research. I’d been on pain meds for years but never experienced any form of dependency so I thought what I was experiencing was something new brought on by nerve damage.

Once I discovered this was withdrawals, I went to him to wean me off. Instead, what I got was him telling me that despite me telling him they no longer were helping me as well as this experience with withdraws he believed they were helping me more than I realised and let’s get me through the winter and wait till summer then we would talk about it. Well, winter had just started and my fear was, if I’m already experiencing this now, what will it be like three months from now?

I had never been addicted to anything and wasn’t about to start now. Luckily I had enough lower dose older prescriptions with a full months worth that I was able to wean myself off within four months with no problems.

Now with all that said the conflict comes in because I have suffered from chronic pain for over 14 years and it’s only getting worse. Part of me is glad because so many doctors dish it out like candy and because of a doctor like that I lost two very important members of my family and a part of myself during that, but at the same time it’s giving those of us who have chronic pain fewer and fewer options for pain relief. I also haven’t ever abused them, nor sold them so for me it’s a catch 22.

I am one of these patients scared every month about my meds. I have never taken an illegal drug in my life and I have been treated like a drug addict again and again. I to am ready for suicide before Zi have to live with this pain at level 15 again. I can’t do it

I too am in Ca. we should fight this together & get other to join us. I was a stable long term treated chronic pain patient abandoned without justification after more than a decade of care without any problems. Until the opiaphobics attack on innocent pain sufferers that have done nothing wrong.

We are in pain & need for pain relief we aren’t criminals to be punished but that is exactly what is being done. Being in Pain & pain relief has been turned into a dirty word & treated like a crime for wanting severe pain relieved. I want to find other people that live in Ca. find other pain sufferers being so needlessly tortured by a medical system that is supposed to do no harm. If even just a few people in Ca. would go to Sacramento we might get some help. If we take our doctors abandonment abuse of human & civil rights violations & the blatant out right torture of innocent people to the government law makers that are only further pushing & forcing our torture with their laws & make them face the innocent people they are harming.

Maybe even if only one of them will find their empathy or compassion for others again & help stop this cruel inhumane torture & abandonment of stable chronic pain patients that have done nothing wrong. We are chronically ill with pain diseases we are not drug abusers or drug addicts.

They need to know what they are doing is immoral unethical & should be illegal. To deny people medications that were proven with medical records to improve their lives & health should be illegal. We are living in hell without any cure & they don’t even have any viable replacement medications to offer to replace the medications they are taking away. the pain relief medications that once made our lives better made life worth living are stripped away with nothing more then I am sorry but because of illegal drug abusers society blinded by fears laws are made that so far has only caused more people to turn to street drugs more people to die in needless agony & it all just goes on making more laws to cause more pain suffering & deaths..

I find this very inhumane. My mother suffered in her last years miserable from pain. She took percocet and lived a very productive life after she started taking it. I want to know why the government is behind this awful mess they’ve created. So many people do live good lives while on this medication. Not everyone who takes it is irresponsible and unable to work or function. Quite the opposite.

In fact, I take it too for the same reason. I hold a full time management job, work hard, and since beginning this medication, my life has changed for the better. I got a promotion. I am responsible, caring and careful. For the government to do this to me is unacceptable. I very much fear I will be unable to do any of what I do today.

Thanks to the people in congress I have been unable to get oxycontin for my chronic pain.I just had my 3rd operation for spinal lumbar stenosis and now I am refused by my doctor for any pain meds. My 2nd surgery 5 years ago My doctor gave me the meds I needed for pain relief, Now with the epidemic of herion I can’t get any pain meds. I suffer 24 hours a day lucky if I get 2 hours of sleep a day. My disease is chronic and progressive and will never go away, I’m 65 yrs old and with in 5 to 6 years I will need more surgery, What will happen by then? I feel suddenly I’m a useless third class citizen that the government would rather see me dead.I do pay my taxes but not enough to suit them. I declare war on TRUMP and ALL his cronies. And all the people that voted for him, Hope all that voted for him are happy we have to pay more taxes, pay more for health insurance, and pay for a wall nobody wants. Oh and let’s make sure we get rid of all the immigrants also you know the ones that farm our land and pick our fruit,hell we don’t need them. Who needs TRUMP I DON”T IMPEACH TRUMP
IF I could get out of this wheel-chair I would be in Washington marching against TRUMP. COME ON PEOPLE TIME FOR ACTION. We need our medications to have a halfway fulfilling life. I was in NAM and represented my country and see what I get. I refuse to stand by and let this IDIOT ruin my country,WAR WAR WAR PLEASE CONTACT ME FOR ANY HELP AND OR ADVISE

I think we need to create websites and demonstrations nationwide, not just Cali. This is an expense cutting maneuver, not an addiction one. I too own my own small company. How do we start?

My wife died 3 1/2 weeks ago. We live in California, and with the DEA regs in place, she was under care of a Pain Management Specialist who was prescribing an ongoing pain medication of 10 mg of oxycodone – 3 to 4 times per day. She was doing well and visiting the Dr. monthly to obtain the next month’s prescription. We went to Hawaii for an extended stay (she was born and raised there).

Her California pain pills lasted into the first month. Then, she went to a Hawaii doctor to obtain her next month’s prescription and learned that, Hawaii, arbitrarily, limits dosage to 5 mg and 3 per day maximum. PERIOD. She went from 40-50 mg. per day to 15 mg. max. Needless to say, this wasn’t enough and there was not weaning from the California dosage allowed. She suffered enough pain (and withdrawals) to basically become bedridden. We had booked our return for Dec 1st, with this in mind.

But one morning, she developed a pain in her leg that was unusual. Her leg looked flushed, and I decided to get her into the emergency room that morning. But on our way out of the apartment, she had to quickly sit and was very dizzy, and then, developed trouble breathing. I had paramedics there in 10 minutes via 911. She suffered a seizure (heart attack), her heart stopped, and she received CPR for an hour and a half, before the ER doctor told me she was dead. I firmly believe she was the victim of DEA overreaching- controlling how much Doctors can prescribe for chronic pain patients. Her inactivity, due to the onslaught of pain and withdrawals, I believe, contributed to her getting the DVT blood clot in her thigh.

People who are suffering from pain of major injuries and ongoing conditions (obliterated rotator cuff due to an extreme shoulder dislocation, plus fibromyalgia are being treated like criminals. This is government overreacting and causing death to innocent people. I am considering some kind of litigation, but I’m in too much mental anguish to do much of anything at this point.

I am so sorry your wife was forced to suffer in such needless & senseless torture of unrelieved pain &amp. Torture is exactly what it was. My heart hurts for yours & her loss. I know that nothing will bring your wife back or make what happened to her right but I agree it is time for those of us being tortured by doctors who take away medications that used to improve our lives & are now turning their backs on their own patients all because of the illegal street drug abuse problems. This should be criminal & they need to be held accountable for the innocent lives made to suffer & lost. Pain patients are dying only because their stable long term treatment was taken away or so severely reduced it caused other health problems, ending their lives.

I know how you feel. My wife is age 70. She is a post-polio patient having to live on these drugs and with a husband with a bad back. The government is not allowing doctors to treat patients even to help give them some quality of life. Why? Why? People can control their own drugs if given a chance.


Sue them for murder.

I agree!!!!! I am going to begin speaking with attorneys and hope everyone else does as well. My husband is in so much pain everyday that we no longer have any quality of life. It is hard at 63 years old to believe that medical doctors have allowed this to happen. It is cruel.

I am a chronic pain patient for 14 years. I am soon to be 63 . Now that I’m on Medicare they refused the medication that works for me which was the lesser of all evils out there .now I found out they took it off the market . Vicodin es. Sometimes I feel like I’m living under a regime. What right do you think Politicians have to interfere with something they know nothing about..
Opiate crisis ? I don’t think so ,fetonyal & heroin yes. The so called experts blame it on pain medication . I went to a Walgreens pharmacy who decided to fill half of my script without asking me then supplied the other half with generic , my insurance denied this claim aarp. I was charged $257. For brand Vicodin although the pharmacist filled 1/2 with generic Than left in pain and withdrawals. People who do suffer should not have this thrusted upon them, without warning .I’ve paid into the system my entire life. I had back fusion with instrumentation radiculopathy and neuropathy and additional back surgery and this is the care I am offered .

My story is not as dramatic or horrific as some I see here. Neither is my pain medication, Hydrocodone 10/325. That’s the lowest end of the pain-meds that actually work. Maybe that’s what makes it important to tell my story.

First let me say that I do not expect to be pain-free. I do expect, with proper pain management, for the pain level acceptable – which means I am able to think about something else and carry on a reasonably normal life. I avoid doing things I know will exacerbate the pain.

I’ve been a dancer all my life; 20 years of ballet, professional dancing in musical comedy shows; ballroom. top-level country/western and North Texas Push competition. This is dancing at the physical level of Olympic sports. And with many of the same trauma injuries — multiple sprains, joint injuries, broken joints and surgeries. I was also a figure skater with a few trophies, and same list of injuries, to my credit.

I am now 71 years old. In my forties I suddenly began having trouble with severe joint pain that just wouldn’t go away, despite every dancer/skater pain trick in my arsenal. I recognized it as what dancers & athletes call “the kind of pain you have to do something about.” My doctor called it “indeed severe” osteoarthritis or severe degenerative joint disease, interchangeably, exacerbated by all the dance floor and ice rink injuries.

So, I have been taking Hydrocodone 10/325 PRN, 4-6 hours, since my mid-forties and doing well; never asked for more, never took more than prescribed and often went longer between doses than allowed, sometimes able to skip a dose. completely, though that’s more seldom since I turned 70.

I don’t expect pain medication to “do it all.” Along with it, I do daily ballet barre exercises, use meditation and distraction techniques (reading riveting authors, writing articles, letters and the occasional novel — three things that will HELP take my mind OFF the pain; very important — and I did have an enormous hot tub which helped tremendously. I swear there is some kind of magic in hot water.

But once the pain spirals out of control, distractions don’t work because the pain does what it’s supposed to do: GET MY FULL ATTENTION until I do something it. And exercise? Standing up straight takes a long time, so does sitting down, and walking? The pain gets worse with every step, starting with the ankles, then calves, knees, hips and right on up through the C1 vertebra, including shoulders, elbows, wrists and fingers. Enough to make me cry. My toes and jaws, oddly, are exempt.

I have an excellent record, with my hand & wrist surgeon, for co-managing careful pain-medication reduction following very invasive wrist surgery. He waited for ME to say, “Let’s take it down a notch.” One time I took it down too fast, the pain went through the stratosphere. He raised it again, one notch, saying “till we’re BOTH sure.” I was completely off pain medication in about 6 weeks. It would be nearly 20 years before I had another pain issue.

I had been with the same doctor, my “R.D.” — Real Doctor, actually a D.O.) for about 40 years. Then he died. For the first 10-15 years under his care, pain was never an issue. Since I first talked to him about it, the pain level has never changed, or increased. It is what it is. I have never asked for more or stronger pain medication.

I have taught meditation for 3 decades, with special classes for pain management. I know what I’m doing. And I have certainly never “shared” or sold my medication. Why would I? I need what is prescribed for me. I never ran short and certainly none to spare.

So now I’ve been in an Assisted Living facility 2, with a new doctor. After seeing me the first time, and hearing my history, he seemed understanding, leading me to expect he would simply continue the medication I was on.

But the very next day the medication I had brought with me the to he facility was used up. It was 6 days with no pain medication at all before he wrote the new prescription. I had to stay in bed on a heating pad, or in the bathroom with a book.

I hear some folks get constipated on analgesics; not me. Hydrocodone also helps greatly with my vicious Irritable Bowel Syndrome, with diarrhea that streams like water from a faucet, with god-awful stomach cramping, and nausea. I could neither sleep nor eat.

THEN — the new prescription was filled, but reduced to only 3 per day, no more often than 6 hours, period. Realizing what the DOCTOR was up against in this inane war against legitimate pain control, I did not complain. And because I had been such a good pain patient and very carefully & responsibly managed my own medication, I was able to work with him to adjust to this regimen without complaint.

THEN, at the end of that prescription, again he delayed the new monthly prescription for another 6 days. I could not get off the heating pad or out of bed to walk the nearly city-block distance to the dining room more than once a day for food. The same IBS-Diarrhea & nausea took hold again (on top of the pain) and by then, of course, depression set in. I don’t take depression meds; I know what’s causing it.

NOW, just last night the prescription was refilled — but instead of a quantity of 90 caplets (30 days – when 8 months of the year are 31 days), he wrote for a quantity of only 80. They’ll be gone in 26 days. And the DEA says he can’t write more than one script a month. I can see what’s coming. And the pain scale only goes to 10?

OK then. Is that based on the worst pain I’ve ever HAD, or the worst I can IMAGINE, or the worst the sadist asking the pain-scale question can imagine? (Lord, I hate this game.) If I’m just waiting for the pharmacy, I’d say 7. Eight is childbirth, 9 is 3rd degree burns over 90% of the body (I’m imagining), and 10 is “Give me a Gun.”

But if this excruciating pain that won’t let me sleep, hold a book or a thought for the distraction technique, get off the heating pad or walk to the Dining Room, along with cramping diarrhea & nausea – AND with NO RELIEF for rest of my life? On a scale of 1 – 10? “Give me a gun.”

ADDENDUM: During the time since my GOOD doctor died, I was TAKEN OFF ALL medication (Hydrocodone, blood-pressure meds, cholesterol meds & even the blood thinner Plavix – had heart attack in 2009 because BP dropped too low). Once for two years, another time for three. Both times by East Indian M.D.s who don’t believe in medication. Both these Eastern Doctors planned to treat for everything with fruit, vegetables and meditation. Seriously. So, my point is . . .

If I had been merely addicted to Hydrocodone, being so thoroughly “de-toxed” should, I would have thought, have significantly IN-creased the pain level at the beginning of “de-tox,” and eventually DE-creased the pain significantly — if not stopped it altogether – certainly in two, or three years. But no. It was exactly the very same pain I’d had all along; no better, no worse. Exactly the very same.
And by the way . . . I’ve been through “Pain Management” 3 times; always coming back to Hydrocodone 10/325, same dosage. But that was a long time ago.

For the record, I have never experience a “high” on Hydrocodone, and I’ve never met anyone who swallowed it recreationally. It just stops pain. Period.

About a decade ago, they came out with a new drug for joint pain that was NOT a narcotic, doctors weren’t afraid to prescribe it, it was no addictive threat, it wasn’t even expensive. AND IT WORKED!!! Other than that, all I remember is that it started with a capital T.

I was thrilled. So was my doctor. The next month when I tried to refill it, the pharmacist had to tell me that the dear ol’ DEA had taken it off the market. In less than 30 days. Seriously. Big Pharma against the DEA.

So, who’s making money out of torturing chronic pain patients? Or is it all politics? At this point, maybe Big Pharma has become our new best friend.

I have had psoriatic arthritis for 25 years had neck surgery fused three discs carpal tunnel surgery both hands countless injections in neck , shoulders and body with steroids the immune deficiency disease I have is slowly eating my body caught fungal pneumonia from taking meds that weakens immune system took year and a half to recover only relief I had was taking hydrocodene now I can’t get it anymore after ten years now I’m bedridden my wife is exhausted from carrying our family no help in sight time to end it but parents still alive at 90 and 93 years old if they weren’t I wouldn’t be either how much longer will I not sleep, eat or bath can’t even brush teeth regularly anymore to tired can’t go on help.

The recent war on opiates is based on the death toll supposedly but when looking at the stats it immediately becomes clear they are lumping the heroin and other illegally obtained opioids deaths which are WAY more than prescription meds…supplied by organized crime and the mexican cartels …anyone heard of the war on the illegal importation of these death drugs??

Not to mention that by eliminating our doctors from prescribing legally obtained meds for us chronic pain sufferers they are driving the market for the illegal drugs and therefor the death tolls rise even more….I have not heard a single “news” report that investigates why the dea cant stop the crime wave of illegal drugs but target legitimate patients and doctors. I wonder why this is true.

I am legitimately sick with long standing health problems that are incurable. I cannot afford marijuana and i depend on these painkillers to help me fight the pain i cope with every second of every waking hour and the ones i cannot sleep through.

Why must I suffer because a bunch of people are abusing these opiates?
If people started smashing themselves over the head with hammers, would we outlaw the use of them?

This law is meant to kill us off. Because if I got to go much longer without any help I consider resorting to street drugs and or suicidal ideation. I came forward because I cannot take my pain. I tried for 20 years to cope. I tried everything, no cure is there for me and now…

My thoughts are that doctors are afraid of losing their licenses when the likelihood of that happening is small. Pill mills are different from a Family Practice treating pain patients. There has to be a distinction concerning over-prescribing and allowing people to get the relief from life killing pain that they need.

There are no true alternatives that really help if you’ve suffered (intractable pain) chronic pain for many yrs. & finally got relief from opiates.Ive tried many & now with strict opiate rules & Insurance changes for poor & old were now forced to suffer until death.More dr & Government official need to suffer tha pain & insanity of that un ending suffering to realize most ppl who suffer as we would never put our regained lives without pain in jeopardy for a cheap idea of a quick high for a functioning life again!!!

Ah, more on the phony war on drugs! American electronic media continues to publish in support of the central government’s phony war on drugs. Interestingly, contrary to the electronic media’s propaganda presentations, are the little people’s responses to to this hog wash, . Who gave government a license to practice medicine, anyway?

If only the little people could be made to believe this drivel. Consider: fifty nine percent of the 2.4 million US prisoners are incarcerated because of drug related “crimes”

Ninety five percent of the readers comments to the Virginian Pilot re: a recent piece on the (phony) war on drugs went like this:

Failing attempts to regulate behavior drive up street prices, fund violence world-wide, and incarcerate tens of thousands of non-violent offenders while working to create and equip violent distributors. Check who funds the politicians who vote for longer sentences…a good bit of their money comes from the prison industries, the companies who build and operate prisons.

The promotion of prison building as a job creator and the use of inmate labor are key elements of the prison industrial complex. The term often implies a network of actors who are motivated by making profits, rather than solely by punishing or rehabilitating criminals or reducing crime rates.

Millions of dollars spent just locally, in paying police, dogs, lawyers, judges, and prisons, to put people in prison perhaps for life (!!), for buying and selling and smoking a plant that grows naturally in the earth

Every time I read these kinds of stories in the Pilot, it just enrages me that our government spends millions of dollars of our tax money on basically violating the very citizens they are sworn to protect. The politicians and police who engage in this kind of activity are the ones who deserve life in prison.

High prices create crime. Before 1923 you could go into any corner drug store and get heroin and cocaine over the counter without a prescription, manufactured by big phama. This article’s comments run 95% to end the war on drugs

Over twenty years ago, the old Virginian Pilot brought down one wannabe president, cocaine addict Chuck Robb. And his goodtime, coke snorting, drug wholesaling pals. But that was then…

Anyway, drugs will continue to be illegal, and the dog will continue chasing his tail, as long as it is profitable for lawyers and banks, and it keeps the court system and law enforcement entities employed. These stories of once in a while success by police departments are laughable.

Of time, money and resources. The Government is full of total idiots
Drug enforcement is nothing more than a treasure hunt in the guise of police protection. The thrill of an every bust now hinges on the seizure of personal property and assets

The fact of the matter is that it’s very enforcement increases crime and supports an industry of jobs centered on incarceration of US citizens
The ones that should spend the rest of their lives in prison are the ones who have thrust this phony war on drugs upon the American People.

The horribly corrupt politicians (past and present): Richard Nixon, Hillary Clinton, Oliver North, GHW Bush and Kathleen Sebelius.

And the corrupt Judges who looked the other way: including Raymond Jackson, J Harvie Wilkinson, Paul Niemeyer, Monte Belot, GE Tidwell, Barry Bennington and a host of others.

And all those corrupt, complaisant government lawyers, including Alan Bersin, Paul McNulty, Janet Reno, and hundreds of others..

And the American drug kingpins: George Sorus, Don Tyson, Jackson Stevens, Steven Bresky and many others.

George Meredith MD
Virginia Beach

I have interstitial cystitis. It’s a chronic bladder and pelvic pain condition. I am highly intolerant to food and medicines, chemicals, fillers, and dyes in medications, perfumes, flowers, etc. I was diagnosed 18 yrs ago, and for 10 yrs I followed a strict diet and only needed an opioid for unrinary track infections. About 8 yrs ago I was starting menopause, and the pain started. Nobody would treat it. I lost 30 lbs from not functioning. I especially could not cook my special diet.

I found a primary care doctor who treated me for many years. Now he will no longer, because he is a private concierge doctor, and charges $3,000 a year plus takes insurance. My deductible is $3,000 a year, too. I don’t have that extra money, an extra 3 grand to give him yearly to be in his practice. During the time I had him I gained my weight back, which is 138lb. I’m 5’7 tall.

He found me a pain clinic that only took me because he went to college with that doctor. The pain doctor put me on a very low dose, and since July 2016 I’ve lost all my weight again. I’m now at 96 lb. Last week my pain doctor left the practice, and the new doctor refuses to even see me. He lowered my dose to wean me off my medicine. I’m seriously sick and could never tolerate my pain. I’m over taking my script now because it’s impossible to bear this pain. I can’t get anyone to listen to me. 4 pain clinics in my area say they do not treat my condition. I’m lost and soon out of my medication. I’ve tried compounded tylenol, ibuprofen, morphine, Elavil, tramadol, muscle relaxers, etc., and I’m reacting to them all. I’m so sensitive to food and drugs. A certain opioid helps me but I need it every 4 hours to gain back my weight. Then I can get out of bed and cook. I avoid most foods because they are causing my pain. I must stop eating for 2 days, and then my pain will stop. It’s bad to do cause I’m 30 lb under weight,


I’m a single father, 55yrs. old. I raised my twins single handedly. I worked for a major corporation for 25yrs. I became disabled in 2009. I’ve had 4 bypasses, 12 cardio stents. I suffer from plantar fascitis and terrible diabetic neuropathy. I’ve taken opiates for 15 yrs. Never abused! DOES ANYONE WANT TO TAKE ANY KIND OF MEDICINE?? NO!! But in order to have any quality of life at all, we must. I was taken off all opiates cold turkey and referred to a pain clinic. The pain management doctor recognized that my pain was so severe that he wanted to place an electronic device under my skin on top of my spine to block the pain from my lower half!! But then turned around and prescribed me 4mg of hydromorphone. I may as well have been taking baby aspirin! I was also prescribed Lyrica. This medication is useless and dangerous. You stay agitated, can’t sleep and all you think about is suicide. Does our government really want us dead? What about alcohol and tobacco? A heck of a lot more people die each year from those. My point is “anything can be abused”. The opioids that I was legally prescribed and never abused gave me some quality of life. We should not be made to suffer, have suicidal thoughts or have some quack treat us like drug addicts just because of the sins of a chosen few! The last time I checked, doctors took a Hippocratic oath. They and the AMA need to fight this atrocity!

People with multiple pain issues should not be having to go through this gamut of bs the CDC is pushing on everyone. I am so mad I could bust. I switched to methadone from Oxycontin to get my stupid doctor to quit whining about my meds and his license. At the same time he cut my meds. I was off a whole week and my pain management guy gave me the methadone, I had nothing in my system for a week put up with cold turkey withdrawals.

And HAD the chance to TITRATE me to the stupid CDC guidelines at that time and did not do it. He said he is cutting my medication and then cutting them again. We had a heated discussion in his office and he had the gall to say to me if you go somewhere else you will be back because I write for more. Like holding my medication over my head like its on the end of a fishing pole whistling. I want to move out of the country NOW!

Ridiculous! Not you, but them. Took vic (lowest dose, without ever asking for an increase) for 13 years for chronic pancreatitis. I cannot eat food without it. Too much pain. Now my doctors will not prescribe it for the past 6 months. DEA push on opiates. Now I take 12-16 pills of acetaminophen OTC per day. Doesn’t help physically but trying to help mentally. Doing terrible damage to my liver.

I am just turned 69 years of age and have failed back syndrome, RA, Fibromyalgia and Seids. Because of a blood transfusion I rec’d in the USN in 1968 I had Hep C but took antivirals and have been free of live virus for 15 years. I have been taking MS Contin 30 mg Extended Release for 3 years down from 60 mg 2 xs a day for 12 years. I also take generic oxicontin 10mg 3xs daily. .5 mg of Xanax 1 evry 12 hrs..I am about to be cut off. I stopped taking meds 1x in all these years and thought I would die. I could not function and was bedridden for 11 months. I have never abused my medicines. My pain mgmt. Doctor apologized. He said he is being forced to comply to CDC, and Medicare, and gov’t. I cannot take Nsaids because of GI issues. Allergic to lyrica. I also have heart issues and take Betapace so other drugs have bad and life threatening interactions with Betapace. I wrote my Senator. He all but called me an addict. Maybe I am. But I certainly have been compliant. Never abused, hoarded or sold. I will not suffer.

How dare anyone come between me and my doctors? I consider that a threat on my life and well being and I have the human right to defend myself from physical harm. My doctors took an oath to do no harm. I guarantee no doctor or bourbon swilling politician will suffer. More people die from alcohol and tobacco by 200 thousand more in each category. Another 240 thousand die from medical errors every year in this country.

I will not go quietly into the night, thats for sure. We should all come together and yell in the cowardly faces of those legislators. They are monsters! The junkies will always find a way to get their drug of choice. We the patients are victims and I intend to start defending myself instead of simply taking their assault on my health and dignity.

I’ve put up with so much crap from the medical community for years now, and I’m fed up! I can’t help it that I have a pain issue. Chronic pain sucks, and mine never goes away. I’ve never gotten carried away with the meds and never come close to over-dosing. So leave me alone about it. If I didn’t get some relief from this pain I would certainly be 6 feet under. At least it gives me some quality of life

My quality of life has declined so much since my pain medication was taken away from me last April. I have signed petitions, written letters, posted editorials, written to congress, tweeted, just about everything I could and continue to do to get this cruel law over ruled fellow sufferers.

I guess the government is now practicing medicine. I will fight until we all (yes YOUand I) get back our medicine or something better by the right of God that NO one can ever take away!

I agree there are way too many doctors that use that prescription pad like a god wielding a life or death sentence. And that’s got to stop.

My quality of life is horrible now without my pain medication. I guess now the government is now in the business of practicing medicine. I’ve written so many letters, comments, tweets, editorials, signed petitions, you name it to get this garbage law overturned. I hope it is in our lifetime, mine and yours, fellow sufferers, that we are treated unfairly in this issue as have been our doctors watching us suffer unduly in our chronic health conditions. May God help us all find relief in getting back our medicine or getting something better that no one can take from us.

I been through 6 failed lower back operations damage nerve scar tissue on nerve 5 deterioration disc upper back 3 severe multiple bone spurs sticking me in my nerves and 2 bulging disc in my neck and another bulging disc in my lower meback I need both kneese replace. And I’m at the end of my rope I suffer from manic depression anxiety and I can no longer take all this pain my pain management doctor is cutting me back way to much I just can’t take it I’m thinking of just ending my life I can’t stand my painful no life it’s just getting to hard.

We have to all find a way to come together. There are many millions of us and our votes count. We can boycott the worst offending phsrmacies. Refuse nsaids…who takes msaids? Pain sufferers. Over 16k die from taking them and they are not meant for long term. Many more than that are going to die when that is all there is. The powers that be want to get rid of opiates because they work.

Yes, let’s all get together and start a class action lawsuit and not talk about it, does anyone or any attorney want to help us?

That would be great, let’s take back our rights to proper chronic pain care, and do this yesterday, anyone know where to start, dying of chronic pain in TN.

I am 53, have polycystic kidney disease, stage 3b. I have suffered from chronic pain for over 20 years. As the amount and size of cysts grow my pain gets worse. For example I had a large 4″ cyst just under my rib cage that constantly caused pain; finally my nephrologist agreed to have that cyst drained. That temporarily relieved that pain (cyst is full again). And you cannot count the cysts on my kidney, liver and ovaries because there are too many to count.

I have never snorted or shot up my pain medication, I have always taken as prescribed. I have never sold them! Yet the pill Nazi nurse at my doctors office treats me as though I’m a criminal. I can’t get an increase in medication because of the pill heads. And now they are going to attack doctors again who prescribe pain medication. When will it end? The addicts will always find a fix & the patients who truly need help will suffer.

Why isn’t anyone doing anything to protect the rights of chronic pain patients?

Pain sufferers are becoming collateral consequences of the War on Opioids.

What do we do??

Someone please advise.

This is scary. Why are we being punished? Whoever these peoe are that created this mess, are they better thab us? God forbid they get ill or injured. Will they get special treatment? Probably. But us in chronic pain are definately bei bff punished. I got told, well, you’re just not getting better and you need to see your doctors. Huh? I see a doctor at LEAST once a week, and my condition will NOT get better. That is my reality. I do believe now this is a form of genocide from our government. It is an overreach of power, socialized medicine. I am highly offended. I cannot take anything over the counter. When I walk, the metal plate holding my back together rubs on my hips when I walk. So, the pain is a delusion? Unreal! I have no options. So, cant take anything over the counter, now cant get medication from any doctor. Where do I go? Bubba on the streets? To be another statistic? And all these poor peoe who want to end it all? This is very scary. It is like Hilter has come back.

We must find a way to come together. Votes count. The CDC gets money from the government. A few heads at CDC think it is safe to attack the most vulnerable in our society. The aged and infirm and sick. We are many, many hundreds of thousands of votes. Call your Senators and congressmen and women and tell them to stop getting between us and our doctors or we will vote them out. This is all politicians really care about. We are a huge block in our society..

I had blood in my urine for years after bad surgeries , have since lost part of kidney due to cancer!! Diagnosed with fibromyalgia years ago too!!! Been on tramadol for many years , now can’t even get that filled !! A dr butchers me , now won’t help with pain!! I hope they (Drs.) all suffer someday from pain , but they’ll just right themselves a script !! Spend my time now going to cancer center!

I was only 33 when pain began, right after that surgery!!!! 53 years old now !!! No help for me!!!!

Why is it that the government will talk to others in govt. But not us? How do you get to speak to the legislators that are deciding whether or not i can get even minimal relief of my pain? What do we have to do to be able to attend the meetings going on so we can advocate for ourselves.

I truly feel we need to go back to the 60’s and do some protests or march on our capitols, do something en masse to get the FDA and CDC to hear from us.

We can complain all we want about the unfairness of it all, but we need to band together to be heard!! I have tried to get to the capitol and speak to the legislators when the drug problem was starting to scare drs. Into no longer prescribing opiates, I was not allowed in to speak. Worse was the fact that no one could tell me who to talk to or what I need to do to be heard.

If any others out there think we need to march on our capitals or demonstrate in some way to be heard by the powers that, be please contact me. I am hoping we can be heard- we are supposedly 10 million strong if not more. We need to support the drs. Fighting on our behalf. As an RN for 45 yrs and disabled since 1995 I am terrified every time I see my pain dr. That he will say, “sorry, I cannot prescribe any longer”. Suicide would become a fast reality, I’m afraid.

I feel for you Sara. I feel the same way. The only alternatives left are heroin or suicide. I dont want to get up every morning with extreme pain for the rest of my life. That is not living. It is suffering.

I am replying to Sari from Connecticut. Hello, Sari, my name is Rich, and I am a disabled chronic pain patient from NJ. I don’t know if you are aware there is a class action lawsuit you can sign.It is called Petition 2 Congress.It can be found by googling chronic pain patients petitions, or google Petition 2 Congress. Good luck, and hope you are feeling better. God bless all the disabled chronically ill people in this country that are being treated inhumanely.

I would love to protest I can not take the pain I been through 6 failed lower back operations damage nerve scar tissue on nerve 5 deterioration disc upper back 3 severe multiple bone spurs sticking me in my nerves and 2 bulging disc in my neck and another bulging disc in my lower back and it’s so wrong how we are being treated

I am in Canada. We have the same problem here. I am doing what I can here w/ respect to contacting politicians. I contacted the medical college in my province and advise AGAINST this – just made my situation worse. Horribly traumatic. One month I’m a nice lady getting my meds every month, the next month my med records stamped “addict/troublemaker” BY THE COLLEGE. Total police state stuff. Bur I totally agree that we need some political action like in the sixties and I don’t know how to do it…but I really think this is what is needed.

The ‘system’ in US and Canada is far less porous than it was 40 years ago – really becoming police states and it is scary. This is a war and it especially distresses me how US veterans are being treated. I am with you. I am not in perfect health but would take to the streets if I could find others to help me. God bless all pain warriors. Please don’t give up. God is on our side.

67 year old male with DDD, Sever scoliosis, spinal stenosis lower back and cervical, spondylosis and long time pain management patient Morristown TN. I finally give up, the feds and Tn legislators know what I need better than the Dr’s and Me. I’m weaning off the fynt patches and quit the oxycodone completely. Am I in PAIN, excruciating, yes, but the GOV. KNOWS what’s best for me. I can’t afford all the test they want so I can get a little relief from this life of pain. What can I do, just go somewhere and die, that’s all that is left. I hope that all these so called do gooder politicians die in pain, but we all know they will GET THEIR PAIN MEDS, nothing too good for the politicians that rule our lives. Good luck pain sufferers, your on your own, we are nothing but pain med seekers and worthless humans to these political elites that want to save us from ourselves, GOOD LUCK AND GOD BLESS.

I was a teacher and therapist, and I am now disabled because of Fibromyalgia, Osteoporosis, 6 collapsed vertabrae, several failed fusions, and severe bone pain. I tried to commit suicide from the unrelenting suffering. For days I would lie in my bed praying to die shaking, vomiting, and fainting. Opioids saved my life. Before my suicide attempt I was turned away by a pain clinic in Minnesota that said post-fusion with rods sticking out my spine that I had hyperalgesia with the low morphine I was taking. In hindsight it was the wrong medication and did not work well for me at low doses. We treat our animals in pain better than this.

Shame on the law makers who are responsible for the deaths of many who kill themselves because they could not find relief from intractable debilitative pain such as mine. Addiction is the least of my worries. I want to live another day to be able to shower, make a meal, and walk my dog. That is all I ask. I had tried everything else: Shock therapy, injections, water therapy, pt, biofeedback, DBT, gabepentin, celebrex, eating organic, drinking clean water, and many other treatments to no avail. Opioids still are working well after 2 years of the same dose that got me out of pain. God bless those who saved my life. I am going to have a pain pump installed which can have numberous complications but I am afraid my doctors will quit prescribing, and I feel pressure to have it put in. We require compassion not treatment. Addicts will find their drugs. People like me will slowly die.

It is sad. As a chronic pain patient I also worked in health care and dealt with every overdose that came through the door, and here is the one absolute truth that will not change even if you banned every opioid made. The government is attacking the drug instead of the problem (the addict) just like trying to ban handguns instead of the murderer. The addict moved to heroin around 2010 when most prescription drugs stopped being prescribed. This is also when overdoses went through the roof. I’ve seen more overdoses in the past two years from heroin than I have in my entire 21yr career. The addict will always find, or make a drug, or way to get high from sniffing paint fumes, or creating new drugs. The ONLY person affected by the attack on opiods is the chronic pain patients who never abused their meds.

Time will show, and continue to show, that until our system deals with the addict the death toll will continue to rise. I bet they won’t track suicide numbers of chronic pain patients, though. Overdoses roll into the ER and treated and released. The government is going to have to commit maybe a billion dollars to build and staff rehab facilities across the country to start sending each overdose patient to properly deal with addiction, which will take 6mos for each patient then monitor patient closely with frequent drug screening the next two years. After the first offense and admittance to a locked-in treatment facility the second offense will require a 12month stay in rehab. After the second offense long term monitoring with urine drug screen will have to happen maybe 5 yrs. If a 3rd offense occurs then prison may have to occur, but I don’t believe very many 3rd offenses will occur.

This obove is the only answer to tackle the addiction problem at this time. Stop attacking prescription pain medicine and the doctors who prescribe them. 1 out of every 3 of us will deal with real pain issues at some point in their lives. Less than 5% of chronic pain patients ever develope addiction problems

God bless, and good luck with that. I truly believe that they don’t care one way or another. The pols have this idea they can legislate behavior. This gets votes from people who have lost loved ones to opioid overdoses, bad behaviour on their part for a cheep high. You and I never abuse or abused our pain meds, I’ve been on pain management for YEARS and never once cheated, always took my meds as prescribed. Do they count that in my evaluation? NO. Why? They just don’t care. I feel your pain, because I have that pain, but they don’t care so just do as I, and give up that’s what they want anyway. Forget about the doctors fighting for us. Those old time doctors no longer exist.

I was hardly ever in daily pain until I hit age 65 and found out I had cirrhosis from Hep C, undetected for 30 years. Though the hep C is cured now, my cirrhosis does not permit me to use nsaids (Advil, aspirin, Motrin, etc) Leaving me no choice but to seek an opiod relief from what now appears to be a chronic, daily, debilitating pain in my back and limbs which I had gotten relief from previously with Advil, freeing me to exercise it to sufferable proportions. Now I cannot perform the stretching exercises, even if I were able to concentrate past the agony I wake up in. I now am actively seeking hydromorphone or fentanyl since they are the only pain relief the Mayo Clinic recommends for cirrhotic patients. My greatest fear is that I will become suicidal eventually and return to the OTC nsaids, if only to survive another day.

If you have been on narcotic medication for years and have never failed a test, or pill count, or run out before your refill date — Why can’t they trust you? You think people in chronic pain take these strong drugs because they are fun? Quite the opposite. They make your brain foggy, make you feel tired all the time, and other painful side effects. But nothing compared with the pain you experience if you do not get pain relief drugs. Who wants to be a problem to the people we love — our relatives, families, friends? It makes suicide a viable alternative that one soon finds himself fantasying about. But that is the last decision a person can make. Until then, we just pray that a system will be put into effect that prevents people that would abuse drugs from getting them, but not by punishing chronic pain sufferers. Life everyone in this world, you really don’t sympathize with anyone until you find yourself in the same boat. I don’t wish that on anyone.

From the time i began in pain management until now my patient experience has been nothing short of demeaning, disrespectful and disgusting. The office staff at numerous acted like I was an inconvenience instead of a person I am an x-ray tech.

I have 4 children, a greenhouse business I am attempting to begin and a life to live. I understand the opioid addiction problem is a real issue in the united states. But the opioid addicts are going to get what they want no matter what. The only people suffering here are the pain patients.

I have herniated disks from t3-t4 disk space down and through my spine. Bidirectional scoliosis, levoscoliosis, degenerative disk disease, osteophytes, sciatica, arthritis, SI joint disfunction, and hip popping syndrome to name a few. I’m 33 years old.

I see the doctor to get relief. I’ve done everything they recommend for back pain. Now it’s they’re turn to help me out. They changed my medication to xtampza 9mg. Why I’m not sure. But the pharmacy doesn’t carry it and it won’t be in for a week. I tried and tried to get a hold of someone at this office, and no-one would call me back. So I eventually went in. It was Friday and I was scared to end up with no medication for the weekend.

After sitting there for a couple of hours listening to other pain patients horror stories about this office, they gave me a coupon. For the very medication the pharmacy has to place on special order. So, I’m out of medication, sick and in pain and They don’t care. And they have the nerve to ask if we are depressed? No we are in pain and no one will help us!!!

All I want is to be able to work and live with a quality of life that allows me to live my life a little bit. Because this isn’t living. It’s existing. Being scared month to month because we may or may not get medication from The doctor – or we failed one of the millions of hoops that we have to jump thrpugh. Or The pharmacy doesn’t have it, or won’t let us have it, or The insurance company won’t authorize it.

And then The doctors’ office does not assist with any of the pharmacy issues. They wouldn’t change my nerve pill from lyrica ($600) with my insurance – to neurontin ($6) with my insurance. Why? They just won’t.

The front desk staff looks down like they are better than every patient here. I can hear them laughing and saying they would never wait and cant believe people would wait this long for a script. Obviously there is a disconnect between patient and medical staff. How can they treat pain if they don’t understand what we live with.

People in chronic pain are dying. People are committing suicide. And the cause of death will be listed as suicide. Depression. No. They died because they couldn’t live with the daily minute to minute pain. No one can live with it. And when the physicians won’t help or listen – someone should be held accountable.

Someone has to speak up for chronic pain patients. But we have no voice. And that my friends is the most depressing thing of all.

First of all, I hope everyone who is in chronic pain and did absolutely nothing wrong and took their medication properly and became injured, to not give up and try to find help through another pain management practice. I was profiled for being in pain management, and my hospital file is filled with the fantasies and lies of doctors that accused me of being a drug abuser simply because I was trying to come off of pain medication for legitimate reasons. I have been treated terribly ever since by every new doctor I see or whenever I wind up in the hospital. I have stage IV cancer now and I suffered for three years before I got desperate enough to go out and find a pain management place that wouldn’t judge Mel and who would believe me when I told them what I was put through. I was dropped by my old pain doctors after being a patient for 7 years and accused of either abusing or selling my medication!!,,, to the ignorant pain management equals drug abuse. Of cours this makes no sense. I was so terrified that I went through a detox at a hospital because I was so ill I didn’t think I could find another doctor to help me because I could barely get out of bed. I wanted to die every day for 3 years. So now that I have cancer it is a little bit easier to get the help I need, but far from easy. I am still a suspect to ANY doctor who digs through my files. I am abused at my local hospital as well. How this can happen to all the innocent law abiding pain patients, I will never know. The drug addicts who caused this entire mess and crazy propaganda still get what they want when they want off the streets and steal, commit crimes to get what they want. Normal people and legitimate pain patients would be seriously harmed trying to get pain medication from the streets. I am not Street wise and would be scared to death to do anything illegal. How much more can all the “good” people take. We are just trying to have what little life we have left pain free. Why is that to much to ask?

I totally agree with these people! Just because of a few that abused them, the government punishes all the people that actually need them! I have heard so many people say they would rather just die than not have them because they hurt so bad! This is sooo wrong! People that need them and have no quality of life with out them, should be able to get them.

This is Not a game, and these doctors and government are playing with peoples lives! Not right! This needs to be Fixed! Give people that need them the pain pills back so they can get out of bed and have quality of life like they should have.

Neurontin is what I use also but my GP prescribes that not my pain doctor. It has its problems also, sleepiness. I have no idea what we are gonna do, this is my third month of weaning off and not sick other than increased pain. If my pain gets any worse I just wanna die, I cannot live every moment in pain, I’m miserable and pain is all I can think about.

I was prescribed Vicodin 5/500 in the 90’s for carpal tunnel in both wrists.Back then ,drs & dentist prescribed these meds,willy nilly and some got hooked, others didn’t. Fast forward to 2017, I have had many accidents,slip and falls, that has come along with age. What I take now is 1 1/2 7/325 norco twice a day with food.

It took me a long time to finally come to grips with my need for this type of pain management without being addicted. Some Dr’s suggested gabapentin, nortripline for me to go nutty on it, and worse. Others wanted me to go to a pain psychiatrist to see if I take these meds when I am upset, lonely or desperate.

I dont. I ONLY take them as needed for back pain and not only does it help,Iam taking less than I had been 5 yrs ago.The issue with ADDICTION is being OBSESSED with being in a altered state. I don’t wake up, nor go to bed taking it. Twice I had more acute pain, and was ‘upgraded’ to Oxycodone 5/325, only to drop BACK to my Norco once healed.

I am one of those with chronic pain, and take these meds responsibly. I don’t share them, I dont ‘party’ on them. For people like me? This new ‘war’ is a mess, cause there are some/many of us who need these meds to get thru our day. It’s NOT one big party!

The only ones they should be concerned with when it comes to “risk-benefit” are pain patients. Addicts and drug abusers should not be given any consideration whatsoever. I found it absolutely ludicrous that the FDA was considering them in the determination of whether a certain prescription drug was safe to be prescribed for pain patients.

What a drug abuser/addict does has nothing to do with it; Nothing is “safe” around an them. Prescription pain relievers are about the pain patient and no one else. They need to be given the benefit of the doubt and stop treating them like drug dealers/addicts.

I have a herniated disk from being rearwnded in 2003, the person who said animals are being treated better than cronic pain patients is 100 percent correct!we need a class action suit.

Help! I am a retired RN and have administered pain medications safely for over 30 years. Now I have parkinson’s disease and horrific spasms in my rectum about 2-3 times a day. I cannot sit or stand when these attacks occur. I have to lie down now!

For 5 years I have been taking hydromorpone as a last resort when all attempts to ease my pain failed. I never took more than prescribed and I never asked for early refills. My doctor encouraged me to take the pain med at first, then last year he began to say “you need to get off this opioid”
Yesterday my doctor told me she could only prescribe one pill a day or she would be “in trouble. ” What is going on here?
I always believed that when I got old and sick at least I would not have to die in pain. I cannot live like this. I spend most of the day in bed. I have an incurable brain disease and it will not be getting better. I am ready to take my own life.Please help!

Why is the government able to make decisions for doctors! My husband was recently told that his brain will reset when he comes off his meds! What the hell Is that? My husband shouldn’t be a Guinea pig or test subject. I want the doctor to come and live with him while he withdraws and even worse when he is in so much agony! He doesn’t sleep as it is since they started decreasing his dose. These patients families suffer too!

What happened to being involved in your own Heath care decisions? What he was taking at least provided some relief. He never got high or abused his medications. They are in a lock box since he is a responsible person.
I am so afraid of what will happen. He won’t be able to work or sleep or watch our kids’ games, even.
What are we suppose to do? Why is he being punished?

Don’t they realize that people will resort to other methods to ease that pain? At least they have a little control when writing prescriptions. When people who wouldn’t dream of it start going to street drugs it will be too late. Their experiment will have failed!

Dear Lord I just pray for these people in the name of Jesus that you will heal them not only for themselves but also for their loved ones and especially little children. In the wonderful and glorious name of Jesus Christ, I hereby ask for a full recovery from the pain for all those who have shared their stories on this web page. Thank your Lord Jesus – amen.

To Steven in Utah: I am a 63 yr old widow & live alone on a country farm. I have a rare nerve connective tissue disease called RSD. I’m in constant pain. My Pain Management Dr just cut my MS-Contin ER 30mg every 12 hrs in half to 15 mg. That was 3 days ago. I am in withdrawals. Plz pray for me.

My quality of life is over because of the sharp and drastic cut in my pain medication. I have scoliosis with scarphosis (humpback) and am in CONSTANT DEBILITATING PAIN! No let up. Sleep is just a memory so I am exhausted all the time. I was also forced off a benzodiazipine that I’ve taken since the early 90’s for panic attacks. The withdrawal was unreal. Need I go on? I can’t stand the pain and it is highly probable that I will have to miss my only son’s wedding because of it.

These are guidelines, not laws. Chronic pain sufferers are being punished, period. I relate to the people who are thinking about suicide because I think about it far too often! The only thing that holds be back is fear of going to hell.

I may have help for the sleep, I take two Baclofen 10 MG & Amitriptylin 50MG at bedtime the only thing that helps the cramps in my legs from my back problems and the AMT knocks me out. It’s a shame we have to fight not only our pain, but the government that knows what’s best for us. Is this still AMERICA, some days I wonder.

Suggest you send your comments to your state medical boards. I have the impression that docs are fearful of what the boards may do to them. (I’m an FP with a buprenorphine ticket.)

I am a 59-year-old pain patient with a gun to her head. I also suffer fro PTSD and most of my injuries are a result of physical abuse. Especially the three broken ribs that I never broke show up on it. Actually, it means that before I was old enough to remember, one of my parents, likely my father did it before I could even remember.

What happened is I was on a very high doses of opiates at first. I was opioid naive. After he nearly killed, then another doc who became my family doctor who hated to prescribe them and was made to by a specialist He would constantly forget refilling them would throw me iied nto withdrawls that were like being in hell. i would almost died when my mood disorder started the panicking and anxiety. I accidentally triend coke, and it stopped the withdrawls. Please co family left now. I am being punished by my doctor for it showing up in three drug tests. The problem is that cocaine does not leave my system for 3 – 4 weeks. Now, he will not be my doctor, and he is cutting me off. I have had panic attacks since Il was sick. I am terrified of withdrals, I am in chronic pain and nerve pain. This is not a punishment this is destroying my life and whatever is in itl

Thank you for letting me speak.


Whoever wrote “yes, some will suffer more, but fewer will die in the future” has never lived with progressive degenerative disc and joint disease for 40 years, and lacks compassion for people living with unbearable pain. Did you read the remarks of those considering suicide? Perhaps that would be a more acceptable solution to you.
And to the person who claimed marijuana works better than pain medication, that may be true for you but pain medicine is not a “one solution fits all”.

Suffering and being unable to take even 1/2 extra tablet because I will be left with only 1/2 tablet for another full day is no way to live. If the people making the regulations lived in my body for a week they might come up with a better solution that doesn’t punish those with debilitating chronic pain.

Kratom in a tea form is better/just as good as an Oxy in relieving pain. Would not have believed it until I tried it. Magical.


Thanks for the idea of Kratom in tea form. My pain is intolerable. I can’t find it on Amazon. Where do you get it

Unfortunately, the evidence is weak, at best, regarding the effectiveness of opiods in the treatment of chronic pain. What is needed is the development of safer, more effective medications for this problem.

Are you in pain, and do you even take pain meds? They DO WORK, my back and the lack now of these meds have me wheelchair bound and in bed most of the time. This is all a war on something they know 0 about.

The only people hurt by this WAR to protect IDIOTS that abuse, are the PEOPLE LIKE ME THAT LIVE IN PAIN. I can’t stand these do-gooders that think they can legislate behaviour, do you really think abusers will stop taking drugs?

I would love to know who I should contact to try to ban together as chronic pain sufferers and try to make govt understand what they’re doing to us. Are there any groups that are protesting about this or trying to make a difference? If so, I’d love all the information I can get, as I’m so tired of being treated like a drug addict.

I wrote all my state and federal legislators but they haven’t even taken the time to respond, THEY DON’T CARE. We are nothing to these power hungry people but ONE VOTE, now if I was a powerful donor, I’m sure they would been on the phone to me by now!

Reading this article and the terrible stories that people are having to deal with makes my chest tighten up, my heart ache & brings tears to my eyes. I had a terrible slip & fall in the shower 6 years ago and for 4 years following that accident, I had relentless pain, my mobility decreased, I gained weight and slowly slipped into a “very scary, dark place” emotionally and mentally.

Luckily and by the grace of God, I found a combination of a good pain doctor + 2 specialists in alternative therapies that have slowly but surely helped me to start to regain my life back. I am not 100% but I am a lot better. I makes me so sad because I know there are people out there who have not been able to find medical professionals that can help and/or will really listen.

I shudder to think where I might be had I not found them. Pain meds work for people who need them & the people who need them should be able to get them without being put through the 3rd degree. They feel bad enough already without being denied and shamed by the government or medical professionals.

I also have a few slip/trip and falls. My left rib was re injured by getting a ‘bear hug’ by a friend. Just went thru 2 weeks of discomfort.Nothing better than having a DOCTOR who understands and listens to our concerns. I am not retired and thankful not to suffer from what caused more pain which was wokring at sedantary jobs, using a computer and minimum activity.

Your the same age as I am, hopefully u will get better overtime.Just make sure to get a good bath mat and take your time at home, cause this is where we can really get hurt when injured.

My wife’s friend was prescribed OxyContin when she had breast cancer. Her son discovered and liked the euphoria effect that he got from grinding up a pill and snorting it. Eventually her medication ran out and over the counter meds took care of her pain. Her son found a dealer that supplied him with the oxy’s that eventually killed him.

It was later learned that the dealer would forge prescriptions to get his inventor. If you understand the prescribing regulations this won’t come as a surprise. In Pennsylvania a doctors use the watermark feature in MS word to create their own prescription paper. For places that use the fancy prescription forms, they don’t even need to lock them up. It doesn’t matter because the printer tray locks that are out today are ineffective. As a result the pharmacist needs to act as a cop and detective on top of their normal work.

Some people think that e-prescribing will fix this. Well NY opioid death rate went up 136% after going all electronic. The DEA has stated that e-prescribing has potential for widespread corruption and doesn’t protect the doctors.

Solution: Mandate the use of only preprinted tamper-resistant prescription forms, require the use of intelligent paper tray locks to prevent the theft of these forms and prescription forgery will be next to impossible to commit. Think of it this way. What are the chances of someone forging one of your personal checks? Stop legal drugs from getting to the black market and you will dry up the problem.

I have worked in the Carpenters Unionn for over 20 years. I have also been in 3 rear end collisions. Between injuries & osteoathritis, if it weren’t for opioids I would never get any sleep…and if you cannot sleep you cannot function. I have NEVER over used, or abused my Rxs, and feel I am surrering because of the actions of others.

I used to take oxycodone 15 mg. four times daily for cervical radiculopathy and fibromyalgia. It worked well but I was in and out of pain all day as after three hours from taking a pill the pain would start to return. My psychiatrist is also a certified addiction specialist and he was able to put me on Suboxone, even though I am not a drug addict, as Suboxone is a potent pain-killer.

Suboxone got me off the oxycodone and out of pain as the half-life of Suboxone is much longer and I don’t have pain breakthroughs anymore. Due to being out of pain, I slowly learned to do the things I’d stopped doing, like vacuuming, or swinging my arms when I walked. I have a full life now due to Suboxone and I have never needed more than the original dose of 16 mg. a day. I don’t experience any euphoria from it and I have no side-effects except constipation.

Responsible doctors know their patients. If they suspect one of their patients is abusing medication they have all the right in the world to send that person on their way. In turn, any of their patients who are in cronic pain, cannot be relieved any other waym and have not abused thier scripts should be able to get the medicine they need in the strength they need to get them through the day.

Quality of life must be afforded to all, if that means opioids in the proper strength then so be it. Another way to go???? Get the marijuana out to these people. We voted for it in November. Get going states! Allow doctors to perscribe and pharmacies to dispense. This is America for crying out loud.

I worry that a lot of people my age will die in their 60s. Pain destroys the body. It ages you. I want to live as long as possible for my grandkids. RA cripples me when they cut back my medicine I quit sleeping good. I hurt more than I did

It is a terrible reactionary action that is punishing people by this probation on opiods. If you look at the money the DEA is making on fining pharmacies and doctors it is easier to understand. If they can make a profit a new industry on fear is born. So goes our uncaring society steeped in ignorance, rationalizing and propagandizing their new draconian industry, punishing those in too much pain to fight back.

They do not care if people are driven to unregulated and dangerous street drugs to get some sort of pain relief. What they care about is having more profits and good worker drones to keep there yachts afoat! As we punish innocent people worldwide who have not the means to find refuge after we have bombed their home into rubble. So it is the same mindset that has a person like me, with a fractured spine, to wait a month to take a psychological test to satisfy the Duke Pain Clinic so I might get some pain relief. Rubbish! North Carolina has to be the worst and Duke Medical Corporation and its practice of making patients wait causes more harm than good.

I do believe the doctors are going against the hippocratic oath they must have taken, worried more about liability then their patients well being. Once again war on anything comes to no good…

Again, as always, the innocent get hurt by the few abusers. Believe me, the ones who abuse the opioids will continue to get them, but the honest ones in extreme pain will be the ones who continue to suffer. It breaks my heart to watch the pain that my daughter is in. She goes to a pain clinic for chonic pain, some days were worse than others but after years they finally got her pain under control.

Some weeks, she didn’t even take opioids, but when she needed them she had them. Her pain conditions, stage 4 endometriosis and Interstitial Cystitis along with peripheral neuropathy have flairs where the pain is extremely severe. The pain of an Interstitial cystitis flair is likened to end stage cancer pain, yet she can no longer control her pain with the medication she needs.

Her pain is no longer in control. I am really scared where this will end up with her. We don’t let our pets live with this kind of pain but they make our loved ones continue to suffer. Someone has to do something.

I had chronic pain for 19 years and used copious amounts of oxycodone. I also had a syncromed pump into my spinal cord. I thought about ending it all as with all this I was still in pain. After 19 years, I was fortunate and God took my pain away I prayed throughout this time and read Job a lot. I think it is unconscionable to do this.

Withdrawal is horrible and you just want to die. Even though I worked with this condition but had to retire in the end, fortunately I had purchased disability insurance. The Dr were always telling my husband that I was addicted. I knew I wasn’t, I just had unbearable pain, but his family had a hx of alcoholism. When I didn’t need the opioids, I weaned off successfully.

I’m happy to hear that others share my concerns and fears, but saddened that they’re suffering so much. I have various sports injuries that never healed well (do any?) and now arthritis in the worst of them to boot. I am prescribed 3 low-dose (5 mg) Vicodins a day, have never used more than my ‘allotment’, don’t take them ‘for fun’ and would never think of selling one.

It is a total drag to have to obtain a written script every month, but my pain is pretty well controlled. I hope that politicians don’t make it impossible for me to continue to be productive. Thanks, Joe; I’ve followed you two for many years and am heartened you have our backs on this issue.

It’s like throwing the baby out with the bath water. Rules affect everyone no matter the situation. Numerous shoulder surgeries, including a complete shoulder replacement, have left me in constant pain.

I take Norco 10/325, the only effective relief for me, but my doctor cut my dosage to just two pills daily! Even then, I have to make monthly appointments to get an Rx.

I am going on 80 years of age and have been taking Oxycodone on and off for several years for chronic back pain. Before I reach for the Oxycodone I try everything else in my “arsenal” like heat patches, Tylenol, ice paks…you name it…and if they don’t relieve my pain I take the opioid. There are trade offs. Constipation, a slight hangover in the morning, etc.

No one has to protect me from myself and I resent someone unrelated and uninformed about my medical condition having the power to dictate how much pain I must tolerate. What are we to do without the option of Oxycodone and the like? Lie awake through the night and suffer? People who find a way to abuse that particular substance will just turn to something else with possibly greater consequences. Who, then, is better off?

I appreciate people’s pharmacy publishing the article but a few comments and replys here is not enough. Everything I have read here I believe to be true and the stories of chronic pain are heartbreaking. The people, organizations and medical providers that understand chronic pain need to step up to the plate for us.

All who have posted here I care very much about you and what you are having to live with. Don’t get caught up with the machine and abundance of snake oils and products that just doesn’t work. There is nothing like opioids for true chronic organic intractable pain.

The sad thing here is that the really needy pain racked patients are being harmed here. These people will take the meds as directed and not abuse them. It’s the drug abusers that will get these meds anyway they can off the street or black market. The crackdown by the government will only hurt the patients that need them. There should be another way rather than making their doctors restrict the prescriptions handed out.

In respect of time I think the U.. should follow Switzerland’s policies they have implemented that have reduced deaths from overdoses by 50% and still doesn’t interfere with the people who are in real pain for whatever reason.

I am a legitimate chronic intractable pain patient. Ten very long years I have done everything the medical community told me to do. I suffer from multiple debilitating incurable diseases that cause severe pain 24/7/365. I have been thru YEARS of physical therapy, massage, chiro, accupuncture, Tens, water therapy, heat, herbal, exercise, many epidurals that made me worse off and left me with adhesive arachnoiditis, I have had two failed spinal fusions that left me with severe nerve damage.

I have tried all the OTC, the NSAIDS and every non opiod medication to ease the pain. Opiods were my LAST RESORT, just like it is for nearly all chronic pain pts, unlike what the corrupt government and thier sidekicks the DEA, CDC, PROP are screaming from the rooftops. I was on the same stable dose for eight years with success. Never painfree, the pain was tolerable. Then in steps the DEA, CDC, and corrupt lawmakers, and my LIFESAVING pain medication was lowered to ineffective doses that leave me in agony most of the time.

The only muscle relaxer that worked very well for me was soma, one at night, Well that’s been taken from me as my dr told me it can’t be given with opiods. Over the last five years I have had hundreds of facet injections, SI Joint injections and trigger point injections that do not work and intensify the pain. My dr says I need to have them or I can’t get the meds. go figure. He has been pushing Lyrica on me and actually gets mad at me when I cannot afford to pick it up. I am on perm. disability, single mom and live off social security once a month, I am on a very tight budget and if the choice is feeding my kids or lyrica, i choose my kids.

My dr used to be a compassionate man, he knows damn well how much I suffer. But for the last several months he has been throwing degrading comments at me, telling me to think about going to detox or seeing a psychiatrist to learn how to think the pain away. Such BS! I once had a QUALITY OF LIFE, NOT ANYMORE! I no longer shower daily, or walk my dog, or clean my home like I once was able to do, I miss out on many family gatherings, my son’s games, hell I can’t even be in a car more than ten minutes as my back locks up and the pain shooting down my right leg makes it extremely difficult to lift my foot from the gas to the pedal.

I suffer from RSD/CRPS, sciatica, severe stenosis, DDD, fibro, neuropathy, radiculopathy, three herniated discs, migraines, two failed back surgeries, just to name a few. I will never allow any dr to cut me open ever again!

The failed war in drugs has turned into an attack/war on legitimate pain pts and our drs!! The DEA continues to target any dr who compassionately treats their pain pts with opiods. Doctors are abandoning their patients, discharging them thru no fault of the patients, they are either being shut down by the DEA or leaving the pain management business. I have been trying to find another dr to take over but have not been successful.

I have been treated like a damn drug addict, pill seeking junkie and told horrible things by drs offices that never met me or seen my ten years of medical records. The CDC guidelines has devastated the pain community as many drs, the VA, and insurance companies have taken those BARBARIC AND INHUMANE “guidelines” into law. A one size fits all approach which is unacceptable.

I am sick and tired of paying the high price with my health and overall well being because of those who choose to abuse and the DEA, and government interfering between a doctor and patient. The CDC created those guidelines based off of false studies, cherry picked data and very bias anti-opioid addiction specialists.

The falsified overdose death rate was created to fit the governments addiction agenda! I am in NJ and just saw the horrific article about 31 drs being sanctioned, THIS BS NEEDS TO END NOW! Legitimate pain pts are turning to the streets for relief or worse SUICIDE! Oh but those who took their lives to escape the overbearing pain are labeled as an overdose, when it was the overbearing chronic intractable pain that killed them.

We treat animals better in this country. I would be arrested on animal cruelty charges if I let my dog suffer! And yet it’s acceptable to allow human beings to exist in a torturous hell!! The pain community needs help now! Addicts are treated betted than pain pts. Pain pts are being turned away at the ER, we are neglected, abused, degraded, stigmatized as addicts, and discriminated against!!!

Better to limit the supply of opioids to help people not get hooked on opioids. The widespread and reckless use of opioids got us into the mess, where more people die of drug overdose than die from automobile accidents and gun shot wounds combined (recent statistic in the news). Yes, some may suffer more but fewer people will die in the future. Will this helped those already addicted to drugs? Probably not, but it seems to the way out is to reduce even almost eliminate these addictive drugs.

For many years I was misdiagnosed as having chronic migraines and had daily headaches. They were afraid of analgesic rebound so I had no pain medication. When I went on Medicare I was able to change health care providers and for the first time was allowed to have pain medication. I was also referred to a pain specialist who did imaging and found out all this time I had significant bone spurs etc in my neck. Before trying surgery he did several other procedures that really helped the pain in my neck but not my head. During all of that I was allowed a reasonable amount of pain medication to be comfortable and allow me to sleep. I did have surgery eventually and that did remove the bone spurs that were causing the headaches.

If anyone has a pain doc in their area I would go to them as quickly as you can.

I am a board certified pain management doctor who turned out to have a genetic defect that causes severe spinal arthritis. Thus, I have been on both sides of this problem, the doctor and the patient.

I have been fortunate to have found a full service pain clinic and to have been deemed disabled so that Medicare/my supplement pays for my monthly doctor visits for opioids. However, I am petrified to ever move out of state (FL) lest I never find such a place again. I get numerous blocks and procedures done, but when I go into my pharmacy with a prescription for extra Norcos to cover the extra pain, I get told I can’t have any as I am not due yet for my monthly refill.

I end up ordering Kratom online to cover the pain, or I ask my doc to write for oxycodone, which doesn’t work as well for me, just so I don’t run through my monthly supply early treating the procedural pain. It is absurd that a physician can’t write for extra pain medications for a chronic pain patient if in his/her opinion it is warranted. That is just too much governmental intrusion into the Doctor patient relationship.

I’ve been on opioids since 2005. Two back surgeries (last a fusion) and one more coming soon. I’ve learned that the pharmacist outranks the pain doctor as to what I need. Thank goodness I’ve switched to methadone…although now people think I’m a recovering heroin addict. Methadone is 12hr relief and much less expensive. I too love my pain mgmt doctor…I will think twice before moving.

I had two teeth pulled recently and the oral surgeon prescribed Norco 10/325 (after being oked by pain doc). Pharmacy tech gave me the “and you really need this even tho you’re on methadone?” Comment. People don’t realize that pain meds keep you sane and able to do simple things like get out of bed or exercise…there is no “high” sensation. Subsequent injuries require special and/or additional pain treatment due to your body having been acclimated to chronic pain meds. I AM NOT SOME JUNKIE, and I’m tired of assumptions otherwise.

The government should stay out of the medical decision making.

I look forward to receiving info on drugs and interactions with other drugs and foods. I recommend this site highly.

I was in auto wreck 5 yrs ago and became disable.i could not return to work at a railroad as they are strict on medicine.i was on pain med before my wreck because of type work i did. i have enough common sense not take pain med while on duty cause its a dangerous job. now i am mostly home bound, and hydrocodone is only way i can do any light chores indoors.

i don’t even attempt outdoor work. the DEA needs to let drs do there job.i understand people use street drugs and pain pills, but dont pentalize me and keep me in pain because of drug addicts. maybe the government wants you in such pain that a person will take their own life so the government can stop paying medical, and disability checks. DEA hasn’t done a thing when people who cant get pain med turn to street drugs. do the research, the USA gives less opiates than most other countries.

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