Thursday, March 6, 2008

Abuse Of Prescribed Or Over the Counter Medication Is Dangerous and Can Be Deadly

There are millions of us who suffer with chronic pain daily. The medication that is prescribed to help relieve that pain is not a joy ride for us. And, because so many people who the medication was not prescribed for abuse them, we stand a chance of losing some of those medications .

Yesterday, on two different news programs, there were two separate reports of an adult going to four different doctors to obtain prescriptions for hydrocodone (a narcotic) and a teenager overdosing on four 80mg of oxycontin (a narcotic usually given to terminally ill patience).

Instead of the community holding the people who abused the medication responsible, a local pharmacist suggest that the medication be taken off the market. He made note that several people under similar circumstances had died over the last few years because of the medications. The news stations seemed to agree with him.

I take oxycodone. It is no where near as potent as 80mg of oxycontin. However, it was reported that, just last week, another teenager died when he crushed several oxycodone pills and took them to get high. This medicine is meant to be taken over a period of several hours. Not all at once. These are choices people, bad choices, deadly choices but, choices just the same.

While I wholeheartedly sympathize with the grieving families, let us be sensible and realistic. These teenagers died because they abused a controlled substance. This medicine is coming from someone else's medicine cabinet. The medication was not prescribed for these teenagers. They were not even taking it as prescribed. It is not the pharmaceuticals responsibility to raise our children. It is ours!

For those of us who take narcotics daily to control our pain, it is no surprise that the lady who filled four prescriptions from four different doctors (this is called "doctor shopping") was caught. She used Medicare to get them filled. It is a surprise, however, that Medicare paid for them to be filled.

It has been my experience that a controlled substance requires random drug testing by your doctor. I was also told by a nurse that the doctors now have a number they can call and all of the medications that have been filled for a particular patient will show up no mater where it was filled.

So, there are fail safes in place. However, the ultimate responsibility still lies with the consumer. Treat your medications as you would any other valuable asset. Keep them in a safe place.

Living With A Chronic Illness Web Site
The Pharmacy Checker

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