OxyContin contains all kinds of warnings about addiction in its prescribing information, but the addiction rate has been underplayed, according to BMJ study author Irfan Dhalla:
For many years the pharmaceutical companies and experts suggested that the risk for addiction was less than 1%. Dr. Dhalla said.Those are the stats. Here's the effect of oxycodone on people's lives:
"That's the number you will see in a lot of papers in the 1990s, and even in the early 2000s. But in fact, we know that the risk of addiction for patients who are being treated for chronic pain for several months or longer is much higher -- one recent study found that the risk was 35%. So addiction is a much bigger problem than physicians think it is," he said.
- Ogden, Utah: Mom gets 15 years in prison for OxyContin-fueled car crash that killed her 3-year old daughter.
- Ashe County, N.C.: Two-year-old child hospitalized in accidental OxyContin overdose. Father and girlfriend arrested.
- Washington, Pa.: Man on trial for ordering a hit on someone he believed had set him up in a major OxyContin sting.
- Elkton, Del.: Attempted robbery of a drugstore.
- Stamford, Conn.: Three TSA agents arrested for taking bribes from oxycodone smugglers.
- Fatal outcomes: 913
- Death: 1057
- Suicidal ideation: 636
- Completed suicide: 798
- Fatal outcomes: 380
- Death: 317
- Overdose: 301
Authorities are waking up. In Los Angeles, four pill mills were raided by sheriff's officers who arrested on man allegedly in possession of 2,000 oxy pills.
In Florida, long a center of the nation's illegal painkiller trade, success has so far been mixed. Sales are down but deaths are up -- to -- following the formation of Gov. Rick Scott's task force against pill mills. It's personal for Scott, his brother is a lifelong oxy addict, he said recently. It's also financial: He made his fortune as the founder of a chain of pill mills.
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