Is your city on this list?

Albuquerque made the list, along with El Paso, and surprisingly, Austin.

Other areas where 100% of police shooting victims in 2015 were black include Virginia Beach, Virginia; Boston; Washington, D.C.; Minneapolis; Raleigh, North Carolina; Milwaukee; Detroit; Philadelphia, and Charlotte-Mecklenberg, North Carolina…

The report is full of other concerning details, such as there apparently being no immediate correlation between violent crime rates and rates of police shootings…

The prevalence of problem opioid use in patients receiving chronic opioid therapy

(July 2015) The prevalence of problem opioid use in patients receiving chronic opioid therapy: computer-assisted review of electronic health record clinical notes.

Palmer RE1, Carrell DS, Cronkite D, Saunders K, Gross DE, Masters E, Donevan S, Hylan TR, Von Kroff M.

Author information: 1aUS Medical Affairs, Pfizer Inc., New York, NY, USA bGroup Health Research Institute, Seattle, WA, USA.

To estimate the prevalence of problem opioid use, we used natural language processing (NLP) techniques to identify clinical notes containing text indicating problem opioid use from over 8 million electronic health records (EHRs) of 22,142 adult patients receiving chronic opioid therapy (COT) within Group Health clinics from 2006 to 2012. Computer-assisted manual review of NLP-identified clinical notes was then used to identify patients with problem opioid use (overuse, misuse, or abuse) according to the study criteria. These methods identified 9.4% of patients receiving COT as having problem opioid use documented during the study period. An additional 4.1% of COT patients had an International Classification of Disease, version 9 (ICD-9) diagnosis without NLP-identified problem opioid use. Agreement between the NLP methods and ICD-9 coding was moderate (kappa = 0.61). Over one-third of the NLP-positive patients did not have an ICD-9 diagnostic code for opioid abuse or dependence. We used structured EHR data to identify 14 risk indicators for problem opioid use. Forty-seven percent of the COT patients had 3 or more risk indicators. The prevalence of problem opioid use was 9.6% among patients with 3 to 4 risk indicators, 26.6% among those with 5 to 6 risk indicators, and 55.04% among those with 7 or more risk indicators. Higher rates of problem opioid use were observed among young COT patients, patients who sustained opioid use for more than 4 quarters, and patients who received higher opioid doses. Methods used in this study provide a promising approach to efficiently identify clinically recognized problem opioid use documented in EHRs of large patient populations. Computer-assisted manual review of EHR clinical notes found a rate of problem opioid use of 9.4% among 22,142 COT patients over 7 years.

What Smoking A Cigarette Does To The Body

With the FDA recently pulling multiple cigarette brands off the market, the conversation surrounding the harmful effects of smoking has been returning in full force to the national stage. Here is what happens to your body as you smoke a cigarette:

Within milliseconds of the first inhalation, endorphins are released in the brain’s societal-rebellion centers

Nicotine stimulates the pleasure center of your brain, its gentle alkaloid fingers running slowly up and down your cortices

The lungs compose a living will

Impaired blood flow to the skin begins to cause wrinkles in women and rugged good looks in men

A full drag held in the lungs for several seconds triggers an increase of dopamine and sense of euphoria in Philip Morris executives

With each subsequent drag, the teeth steadily yellow and the trachea becomes irritated, quadrupling one’s risk of character acting

Nothing really occurs in the feet

Intense cramping sets in as the hand’s pinching muscles endure the workout of holding the cigarette as it steadily burns down to the filter

In moments after smoking, massive adrenaline rush results from attempt to steal another cigarette from mom’s purse

Chasing Balloons

“Not knowing the thing that’s chasing you is a lot scarier than seeing it right in front of you.”  Oren Peli



“I’d rather be two strokes ahead going into the last day than two strokes behind. Having said that, it’s probably easier to win coming from behind. There is no fear in chasing. There is fear in being chased.” Jack Nicklaus


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“You can’t always get what you want.”  Rolling Stones

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“‘SpongeBob SquarePants’ is a great show, and it centers on a character that is courageously nice. Why is SpongeBob interesting? It’s because he has passion. He has a passion for chasing jellyfish.”  Vince Gilligan

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“One thing I’m not going to do is chase staying alive. You spend so much time chasing staying alive, you won’t live.”  Patrick Swayze


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“If everybody in this town connected with politics had to leave town because of chasing women and drinking, you would have no government.” Barry Goldwater

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(Photos taken today.)

Internet Perpetuity

(12/21/2015) More than 47,000 drug overdose deaths last year

My comment:

(2013) Deaths from:

Prescription Analgesics: 16,235

Alcohol-Induced Deaths: 29,001

Firearms: 33,636

Intentional Self-Harm (Suicide): 41,149

“There were 41,149 suicides in 2013 in the United States—a rate of 12.6 per 100,000 is equal to 113 suicides each day or one every 13 minutes… Based on data about suicides in 16 National Violent Death Reporting System states in 2010, 33.4% of suicide decedents tested positive for alcohol, 23.8% for antidepressants, and 20.0% for opiates, including heroin and prescription pain killers.” (CDC)

“Suicide (+3.2%), unintentional injuries (+2.8%), and stroke (+0.8%) also increased in 2014.” (CDC/MedPage Today)

As far as I can tell, these statistics don’t include the number of suicides in the veteran population. Add these numbers together, along with the high percentage of under-reporting, and the suicide rate has reached epidemic proportions. Yet, all the media can report on is the opioid war — it boggles the mind. Seriously.

You can trace the increases in both drug overdoses and suicides to the increased level of activity in the opioid war. Do those results suggest that we should keep making things worse?

And isn’t it time that everyone stopped blaming chronic pain patients? Because until I can see a breakdown of the medical conditions for all of these overdose victims, I can only assume that the majority of them were suffering from addiction, with only a small percentage suffering from chronic pain. (I wonder if the suicide statistics would say the same, or are the majority of suicide victims chronic pain patients?) Which means that all this enforcement against — and shaming of — pain patients is only making everything worse (as the statistics show).

You don’t have to believe me — all this information will be stored on the internet, so in a couple of years (when everything is worse), we’ll know who was right (and who to blame for even more tragic results).

Sorry for the length of this comment, but if the media refuses to fully report on these issues, I’m left with little choice. (I mean, do you think I enjoy spending my time this way? Typing out apparently useless comments, the only purpose of which is for internet perpetuity?) Merry Christmas, and may you never suffer from chronic pain.

Dear CDC: Tell me, what the hell do you know?

You tell me it gets better, it gets better in time
You say I’ll pull myself together, pull it together, you’ll be fine
Tell me, what the hell do you know? What do you know?
Tell me, how the hell could you know? How could you know?

Til it happens to you, you don’t know how it feels, how it feels
Til it happens to you, you won’t know, it won’t be real
No, it won’t be real, won’t know how it feels

You tell me hold your head up, hold your head up and be strong
Cause when you fall you gotta get up, you gotta get up and move on
Tell me, how the hell could you talk, how could you talk?
Cause until you walk where I walk, this is no joke

Til it happens to you, you don’t know how it feels, how it feels
Til it happens to you, you won’t know, it won’t be real
(How could you know?)
No it won’t be real
(How could you know?)
Won’t know how I feel

Til your world burns and crashes
Til you’re at the end, the end of your rope
Til you’re standing in my shoes
I don’t wanna hear a thing from you, from you, from you
Cause you don’t know

Til it happens to you, you don’t know how I feel, how I feel
How I feel
Til it happens to you, you won’t know, it won’t be real
(How could you know?)
No it won’t be real
(How could you know?)
Won’t know how it feels

Til it happens to you