Drug abuse co-occurring with chronic pain, comment

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I do agree that physicians are obligated to try to relieve the pain to there fullest power, however, one person may continue to experience pain and the physician should not always be held liable. It is the responsibility of the physician to do all that is in their power, but sometimes despite attempts at pain relief, some patients who have been addicted to drugs in the past end up with chronic pain. I do not think that one should be judged by their past experiences with drugs nor do I think this is a reason to keep pain medications from them. They have the right to treatment. Sometimes one of the barriers is that when a person has done drugs in the past, they have a higher threshold, meaning that they may require more of a substance than the physician who is treating them is willing to prescribe. Some past drug addicts require mega doses of morphine for pain, and some doctors do not feel safe in prescribing this. As an overdose could end fatal. One of the things that Naturopaths can do is to help the patient focus on other things instead of the pain. Try relaxation techniques and try to help the patient focus on healing instead of feeling the pain. While this will not work for all patients, this will work for some.

Original Post:
October 16, 2008
Drug abuse co-occurring with chronic pain
Physicians are obligated to relieve chronic pain. What should the professional do when chronic pain is present, but substance abuse is a concealed co-occurring disorder? When addicted patients experience any type of pain, the goal is to treat the pain; the addiction treatment in not the priority while patient is in pain. If drug abuse is unknown in the patient it’s the nurse’s job to suspect abuse when normal doses of analgesics do not relive the patient’s pain. If the nurse can determine the drug that is being abused and the amount being used, it is best to avoid exposing that drug to the patient and have an alternative drug.

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