Get ready to read some amazing statistics! If you’ve ever sat back and said “What’s the big deal about narcotic prescriptions, why is Congress getting involved?”, after reading these facts your mind will probably change.
Arizona pain doctors are prescribing more drugs than ever before, and narcotic prescriptions have increased fourfold in America between 2000 and 2010. In 2001, Congress initiated the Decade of Pain Control and Research. Prior to this, there was a large push in the 1990′s to recognize pain as the “5th Vital Sign” and treat those in pain humanely with opioid medications to try and provide relief.
With the amount of opioid prescriptions increasing exponentially, so have the problems. Here are some facts of where things stand.
- 20% of people in the US have abused prescription drugs for nonmedical reasons
- 6.2 million Americans abused prescription drugs in 2010
- A U. of Michigan study showed by 12th grade, about 10% of students had tried Vicodin.
- According to the CDC, prescription drug overdose fatalities more than tripled between 2004 to 2009 and now stands at approximately 20,000 annually in the US.
- About 5% of Americans overall said they have used a prescription narcotic in the last month.
- 2009 statistics showed that prescription painkillers surpassed heroin and cocaine as the leading cause of fatal overdoses.
- A recent AP analysis showed that hospitals, physicians and pharmacies dispensed what amounts to 69 tons of pure oxycodone and 42 tons of pure hydrocodone in 2010 alone.
- In 2010, federal researchers reported that ER visits resulting from the non-medical use of narcotic prescriptions more than doubled in the 5 years between 2004 and 2009. There were as many visits for those prescription medications as for illegal drugs.
- The use of narcotic prescriptions increased fourfold between 1999 and 2010. According to the CDC, physicians write approximately 300 million opioid prescriptions annually.
- Hydrocodone is the most commonly prescribed drug in the US.
- For every narcotic overdose fatality, 32 people receive treatment in an ER for overdoses that are nonfatal. Considering there are approximately 20,000 fatal overdoses annually in the US, that means over 600,000 people visit an ER each year for a nonfatal overdose.
- Every 14 minutes, someone in the US dies of an overdose of prescription drugs. This includes anxiety and narcotic medications.
WOW! Those statistics are amazing. While patients receiving opioid medications at pain clinics in Arizona can always take the medication inappropriately, or mix with alcohol or other substances, there is a safe way to prescribe.
Arizona Pain Specialists has developed a 12 step compliance program intended to put the “best foot forward” with safety and making patients accountable for their treatment. This includes urine drug screening, state pharmacy database checking, pain agreements, physical exams, documentation of opioid effectiveness and more.
The most important thing that Arizona Pain has done is also incorporate comprehensive care including interventional treatments, physical rehabilitation, chiropractic treatment, acupuncture, spinal decompression therapy, and TENS units. With the multitude of options available for treatment, opioid medications are often minimized. Or at least not needed to escalate.
Call Arizona Pain today to get started with Phoenix pain management treatment at (602) 507-6550. The Phoenix pain doctors serve Chandler, Scottsdale, Glendale, Mesa, Tempe, Surprise, Goodyear and surrounding areas.