In my search terms (Narcan)

“Why did I have extreme pain when the paramedic gave me narcan after I overdosed?”

Your pain is probably due to the pain of withdrawal, which will affect you both physically and mentally. (Narcan’s effects are both immediate and amplified.) Some people even equate withdrawal with torture (including me). There’s also the possibility that the drugs you were taking masked certain physical pain in your body, which then became stronger after being given Narcan.

The brain makes its own pain-relieving chemicals, but Narcan violently disrupts those pathways, so your brain is left with no way to manage or fight pain. How long does this effect last? How long is your brain handicapped? Hours, days, or maybe years? I’m guessing it’s different for everyone.

Can Narcan cause or increase chronic pain? It appears that no one knows the answer to that question. But does it even matter? When someone is given Narcan, they’re not in a position to be advised about the possible long-term effects of that drug. And Narcan saves lives, so who cares about the side effects, right?

I’m gonna bring you back to life with this miracle drug, but there’s a possibility that it will cause you to be in constant physical and/or mental pain for the rest of your life. Okey dokey?

Fuckinephrine

Thanks to The Honking Goose for posting this Funny or Die video. It’s hilarious.

“And now the FDA has approved yelling fuck for election relief.”

“Yelling fuck is covered by Obamacare.” 😀

https://painkills2.wordpress.com/2015/04/14/people-who-say-fck-a-lot-are-hotter-and-healthier/

Et tu, John Oliver?

Maybe you will recall an article in the New York Times this year about the ER at St. Joseph’s Regional Medical Center in Paterson, New Jersey, deciding to use opioids only as a “last resort” to treat pain:

https://painkills2.wordpress.com/2016/06/15/dear-ny-times-you-suck/

Here’s a recent article praising the virtues of these new programs to treat pain from the American Hospital Association:

http://www.hhnmag.com/articles/7653-overthrowing-todays-pain-paradigm

When leaders set out to create a more uniform approach to emergency pain treatment, the original goal was to run an “opioid-free ED.” However, Rosenberg says they soon realized that this was unrealistic and, instead, have fostered a culture in which physicians have a broader range of resources. Opioids are now the last line of defense.The medical center’s Alternatives to Opioids program was launched in January for patients who present with one of five acute pain diagnoses — headache, long bone fractures, kidney stones, back pain and other musculoskeletal pain…

Since January, St. Joe’s already has cut the number of opioids prescribed in its ED by 38 percent…

The opioid war loves to tell us how much the supply of opioids has been decreasing. How wonderful. But this one statistic doesn’t tell us much. Why don’t we visit Paterson, NJ, and see how it’s doing?

http://www.nj.com/passaic-county/index.ssf/2016/10/7_drug_overdoses_reported_over_1-day_period_in_pat.html

Seven people overdosed on drugs in a 24-hour period Thursday in Paterson – four of them in a one-hour period in a park on Ward Street, authorities said Friday…  All seven victims survived after receiving medical treatment, police said…

“Fentanyl and carafentinal are increasingly apparent and becoming a national problem,” Speziale said Friday. “Many toxicology reports come back with what is categorized as polypharm, which means there’s a combination of heroin, fentanyl and other opiods.” …

http://www.recordonline.com/article/20160109/NEWS/160109447

In fact, law enforcement intelligence points to Paterson and Newark, N.J., as the sources for much of the heroin that’s plaguing the lower Hudson Valley, northern New Jersey and the Tri-State area where Port Jervis sits.

“For western Orange County, Paterson is the connection,” said Orange County District Attorney David Hoovler. Why Paterson? Heroin there is cheap and accessible…

The treatment courts are full. The narcotics unit is running full bore. Meanwhile, overdoses are worsening…

Back to the article by the American Hospital Association:

The massive Veterans Health Administration — with more than 1,700 care sites treating nearly 9 million patients annually — recently rolled out a systemwide effort to better address the complex pain from which returning vets often suffer. Dubbed the Opioid Safety Initiative, it targets individuals on high-dose prescriptions, and helps them to treat their pain through education, a mobile app called Pain Coach, and such alternative treatments as acupuncture. At the initial implementation sites, the VA reduced high-dose opioid use by more than 50 percent, with no rise in pain scores…

With no rise in pain scores? (I’m sorry, but if you believe that, I want to sell you some bitcoins.) Even with those patients who didn’t see a rise in their pain scores after being forced off of opioids, that just means their pain scores didn’t change and are still high.

Rollin Gallagher, M.D., the deputy national program director for pain management at the VA, believes these results can be duplicated easily at any hospital…

Groups like the American Hospital Association urged the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services to remove pain-related questions from patient satisfaction surveys and, in July, CMS agreed to do so…

From a graphic in the article:

The U.S. has experienced a 300 percent surge in prescription opioids dispensing since 1999, with no corresponding drop in the amount of pain reported by Americans.

I don’t know where they got this information, and I’m not sure what it’s supposed to be telling us. Opioids help manage pain, they don’t get rid of it, so why would there be a drop in the amount of pain reported? Using this questionable information, we could also say that there hasn’t been an increase in the amount of pain reported by Americans. And that would be a good thing, but we’re not allowed to give any credit to opioids.

http://www.painnewsnetwork.org/stories/2016/10/20/fewer-pain-meds-but-more-overdoses-in-massachusetts

The CDC said it will “take time” before overdoses start to decline.

“Reducing the level of opioid prescribing is a long term strategy to limit exposure to these drugs. Mortality outcomes would not be expected to change for several years after implementation, and impact would be complicated by the increasing supply of illicit opioids,” Courtney Lenard, a CDC spokesperson, said in an email to Pain News Network…

The actions of the DEA, CDC, and VA have actually increased the size of the underground drug market. They have created this demand. They are the reason that people are overdosing on unsafe, illegal drugs. But you see, these government agencies have decided that they’re okay with that. This is a “long term strategy,” and they know that some people will be lost. They think they’re saving lives in the future, which for some reason, is more important than saving lives in the present.

The thing is, everything may be getting even worse for pain patients. Because, allegedly, corporate power has been hampering the DEA’s efforts to get at suppliers and distributors, at least according to recent articles in the Washington Post. Even if Big Pharma just keeps getting a slap on the wrist, that doesn’t mean they’re still operating in the same way. They don’t want to pay more fines and they’re spending millions to develop new and “safe” painkillers (which will be expensive, probably less effective, and out of reach for many patients). And there are millions of corporate dollars funding the opioid war, matched by our tax dollars.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/investigations/the-dea-slowed-enforcement-while-the-opioid-epidemic-grew-out-of-control/2016/10/22/aea2bf8e-7f71-11e6-8d13-d7c704ef9fd9_story.html

Before Reeves’s arrival, Geldhof said, investigators had to demonstrate that they had amassed “a preponderance of evidence” before moving forward with enforcement cases, which are administrative, not criminal. Under Reeves, Geldhof said, investigators had to establish that their evidence was “beyond a reasonable doubt,” a much higher standard used in criminal ­cases…

You can label a case as “administrative,” but it still involves drugs and crime, so why shouldn’t the agency be required to prove the higher standard? It appears that the DEA has been stripped of some of its abusive power — and they want it back. So, they’re blaming corporate power for the slowdown in cases. Will Congress give this power back to the DEA? Perhaps I should say, when Congress gives this power back to the DEA, things will get worse for pain patients.

To top it all off, the latest episode of John Oliver is about the opioid “crisis.” I don’t think he added any new information about the opioid war, but he appeared to be on the side of the CDC. He mentioned that opioids were only previously prescribed for acute pain. He included a video from PFROP. He made one slight mention of patients who need these medications, but he mostly blamed the whole thing on Big Pharma, singling out Purdue. He mentions how insurance needs to cover alternative treatments, without including the fact that alternative treatments only work for a small percentage of patients.

For me — who finds humor in just about anything (even Trump) — I didn’t find anything funny in John Oliver’s take on the opioid “crisis.” For the first time, I’m disappointed in Mr. Oliver. I’m sad that so many intelligent people cannot see the whole picture of the opioid war. Cannot see the millions of chronic pain patients who are suffering. And why doesn’t the media ever mention the epidemic of suicide in this country? It’s as if those deaths have nothing to do with pain and the opioid war.

Today I’m very sad that there is not one person with any power who is willing to stand up for pain patients. As if we are unimportant and mean absolutely nothing. As if science means absolutely nothing.

Thanks for reading. Sorry if I bummed you out. Blame John Oliver and Trump. 🙂

Time to dance!

Do you want to know what’s popular with kids these days? Just type “Juju” into YouTube. Sometimes, I feel really ancient. 🙂

There are also YouTube versions with lyrics. “You ugly. You your daddy’s son.” Does someone want to translate that for me?

If people are brave enough to dance in the grocery store, don’t you think you can do some dancing right now, at home, in front of your computer screen? After watching numerous videos of people doing the Juju dance, I think I’ve got at least one move down…

Juju on that beat, Juju on that beat, Juju on that, Juju on that, Juju on that beat. 🙂

The Stink of Hypocrisy

There is no scientific basis for the drug war. Deciding if a drug is illegal (or restricting its use) has nothing to do with the number of people who die after using that drug.

You can compare alcohol to just about any other drug, and the drug will always do less damage than alcohol. And yet, alcohol will always be legal. It seems that the legal standing of a drug is only part of the reason that people will use and abuse it.

http://www.ncadd.org/blogs/in-the-news/alcohol-related-deaths-highest-in-35-years

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention(CDC,) there were 30,000 American deaths from alcohol-induced causes in 2014. The CDC report notes that the deaths included alcohol poisoning and cirrhosis, liver damage primarily caused by drinking.

In an article published by Medical Daily, that information translates to 9.6 deaths from alcohol-induced causes per 100,000 people, a figure that has risen 37 percent since 2002. These alarming numbers don’t even include deaths from drunk driving, and other accidents or homicides committed under the influence of alcohol…

http://www.niaaa.nih.gov/alcohol-health/overview-alcohol-consumption/alcohol-facts-and-statistics

Nearly 88,000 people (approximately 62,000 men and 26,000 women) die from alcohol-related causes annually, making alcohol the fourth leading preventable cause of death in the United States. In 2014, alcohol-impaired driving fatalities accounted for 9,967 deaths (31 percent of overall driving fatalities).

I don’t think that deaths due to opioids will ever be more than just a fraction of those from alcohol. But do you hear any of the media talking about the epidemic of alcoholism in this country? No, we only hear about the opioid and heroin “epidemic.” Why is that?

No matter the reason, it all stinks of hypocrisy. Wanna talk about sugar?

I’ll tell you what, when you restrict the use of painkillers, the use of alcohol (and sugar) will only increase further. But that’s okay with the CDC, FDA, and DEA.

How many pain patients have given up?

http://www.yahoo.com/news/vermont-governor-pushes-limit-prescription-painkillers-combat-opioid-180014408.html

“Vermont, and the rest of America, will not get a handle on the opiate and heroin addiction crisis until we confront head-on the source of the problem: FDA-approved opiates that are handed out like candy,” Gov. Peter Shumlin said in a statement…

The $11 billion a year opiate industry in America knows no shame,” Shumlin said, adding that “opiate addiction is the one thing that could destroy Vermont as we know it.” …

“We must flip the presumption that a patient needs opioids to manage pain…” the state’s health commissioner, Dr. Harry Chen, said in a statement.

Opiates are handed out like candy? They’re the cause of the addiction “crisis”? They’ll be responsible for destroying a whole state? What universe is this dude living in? It’s sad that there’s only 5 comments on this article, even if they’re all from people who suffer from chronic pain. How many of us have given up?

Now let’s look at how the media talks about antidepressants:

http://www.yahoo.com/news/on-the-pill-why-the-taking-of-antidepressants-is-144204159.html

Earlier this week Amanda Seyfried opened up about why she doesn’t think she will ever come off the antidepressants she takes to keep her mental illness in check. The 30-year-old actress has been taking Lexapro to help manage her Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) since she was 19-years-old.

“I’ll never get off of it,” she told Allure. “I don’t see the point of getting off of it. Whether it’s placebo or not, I don’t want to risk it. And what are you fighting against? Just the stigma of using a tool?” …

The message is clear, taking mental health medication doesn’t make you weak, nor does it deter from your ability to stay strong in the face of adversity. Because opting to take medication for a mental health problem can be one of the bravest decisions sufferers can make. At the very least it shows that they are willing to get help, that they want to get better and it reflects the fact that they think they can get better…

Reading this reminds me that I don’t have the option of managing my intractable pain with the drugs that help me the most. I don’t even want to try to see another pain doctor. (Because, as you know, doctors suck.)

I never thought the drugs would help me “get better,” but I did think they would keep the condition from getting worse. (Sometimes I hate it when I’m right.) It feels like I’ve pretty much given up and I’m now just waiting for something to kill me, as that’s the only way for the pain to end.

This is the drug war. And that’s what really needs to end. Unfortunately, I won’t live to see it, but I’ll bet it will be a worldwide celebration. Drugs are not the enemy, people.

The debate between Evil vs. Sanity

Being Evil is easy.

01dsc05704-0-2

Being Sane is hard.

02dsc05734-0

Sanity is boring.

03dsc05702-0

Sanity is safe.

04dsc05733-3

Evil is fun.

05dsc05700-0

Fun can be destructive.

06dsc05730-0-2

When you’re Evil, you only have to care about yourself.

07dsc05703-2

When you’re Sane, you know that other people matter.

08dsc05730-3

People fear Evil. To be feared is to be powerful.

09dsc05705-0-2

People need Sanity. Sanity is empowering.

10dsc05734-2

“What is objectionable, what is dangerous about extremists, is not that they are extreme, but that they are intolerant. The evil is not what they say about their cause, but what they say about their opponents.” Robert Kennedy

11dsc05705-2

12dsc05701-4

13dsc05701-3

14dsc05700-2

“Richard Nixon was an evil man – evil in a way that only those who believe in the physical reality of the Devil can understand it. He was utterly without ethics or morals or any bedrock sense of decency.” Hunter S. Thompson

15dsc05705-3

16dsc05733-2

dsc05702-2

“You can compromise between good, better, and best, and you can compromise between bad and worse and terrible. But you can’t compromise between good and evil.” Gary Ackerman

The giddiness of an insomniac

I’m sure you think that weed would help a person sleep, but no, not for me. Nothing helps me fall sleep. Nothing keeps me asleep. And when I can’t even catch an hour’s worth of this valuable commodity, the exhaustion turns into a little bit of giddiness (dizziness).

But I don’t expect cannabis to treat all of the symptoms of my intractable pain, so please don’t think that I’m dissing my favorite bud. In fact, a couple of weeks ago, I was lucky enough to find an awesome strain. It was called G13 — or so I was told, but you never know. It’s so enormously frustrating to come across a strain this good, only to have it for such a short time, with no way to get more.

So, even though cannabis doesn’t help me sleep, it’s always worth a meme post…

71a42bc9d360f46b45a435cb8568beba

The name’s Jane. Mary Jane. 🙂

87bec0adb037259f73e0a58907921282

a27daa63c2a3c046701fc5f11a74a5ea

if-all-7-billion-people-smoked-a-joint-today-all-4281790

8c021ecd89b61c48471ddf4bc792215c

marijuana humor

stonerdays-memes-6-0

8_2

when-buzz-lightyear-has-a-day-off-0

5c912cc02d8fde87ac51154f52392775

3b97fffc4966521da9a82f87c6cabb66

Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious! 🙂