Opioid Addiction

The extent of the opioid addiction and overdose death epidemic in Pennsylvania is appalling, causing at least seven victims to die everyday from drug overdoses. There were over 2500 overdose deaths in Pennsylvania in 2014.

University of Pittsburgh Graduate School of Public Health study showed that fatal drug overdoses in Pennsylvania increased 14 fold, from 60 million grams – 126 million grams between 1979 and 2014.

Additionally the highest rates of drug overdose deaths were found in counties in southwestern Pennsylvania, those surrounding Philadelphia and in the Northeast near Scranton.

Some estimates are that 80% of current heroin users switched to heroin when prescription opioids became too expensive or too difficult to procure.

In mid February 2016 modern Healthcare took a closer look at the root of the country’s opioid abuse problem and trace it back to 1996 when Purdue Pharma began promoting a new drug to fight pain called Oxycontin. Early on, the medication was billed as being safe because it would slowly release narcotic ingredients, making it unlikely to become addictive.

Nearly Ten Years Later in 2007 Purdue would plead guilty in federal court to criminal charges that they misled regulators, doctors, and patients about the drug’s risk of addiction as well as its potential to be abused.

We need physicians to consider conservative measures first before resorting to prescribing addictive drugs.

Chiropractic has been seen for many years as a suscessful nonpharmalogical way of restoring health.  Many chiropractic studies show high effectiveness and patient satisfaction with the lowest malpractice rates among most healthcare practitioners.

More recently, the Ohio State Attorney General filed a lawsuit at the end of May 2017 against the big drug companies allegedly arguing that these companies knew about, advertised and took advantage of addiction as part of their planned marketing of these drugs to create huge profits… knowing that addicts would drive the money coming in.