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Prescribing opioids is a huge bummer 

 •  • by Paul Ingraham
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Weekly nuggets of pain science news and insight, usually 100-300 words, with the occasional longer post. The blog is the “director’s commentary” on the core content of a library of major articles and books about common painful problems and popular treatments. See the blog archives or updates for the whole site.

More and more chronic pain patients are “forced to navigate their transition off prescribed opioids, often with little or no assistance or guidance, with the potential for disastrous results,” explain the authors of a well-written NEJM editorial about the serious medical consequences of physicians choosing to “simplify their lives by discontinuing prescribing of opioid analgesics.”

And why would physicians stop prescribing opioids? “The most important contributor to a desire to stop prescribing opioids is the effect of opioid prescribing on clinicians’ emotional well-being.”

Translation: dealing with opioids professionally is a huge bummer.

It’s difficult to walk into an exam room knowing that we have to significantly reduce or stop a patient’s opioid treatment — and then deal with the lengthy, emotional, possibly confrontational encounter that typically ensues.

“It’s difficult.” An understatement, I am sure.

PainSci Member Login » Submit your email to unlock member content. If you can’t remember/access your registration email, please contact me. ~ Paul Ingraham, PainSci Publisher