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FDA finally speaks out against fast opioid tapers

Here’s my response to the recent article “FDA Warns About Fast Opioid Tapers” that appeared on the Pain News Network website on 4-9-19:

While I have been doing slow tapers ever since the CDC Guidelines came out in March 2016, I have watched other patients suffer from their providers, whether at the VA or in the multiple clinics, around the Roseburg, Oregon area. They rapidly tapered patients to save their own butts with no concerns as to the welfare or response of the patient. They still try to find any excuse to fire a patient or deny them medication refills. They fail to confirm urine drug tests with lab analysis and rely solely on point-of-care cups that have false positive and negative results that need to be confirmed. Chronic pain is the “black sheep” of medicine that no one around here wants to treat. When you used to search for a provider, the first question they often asked was “What’s your insurance?” Now its “Do you have chronic pain? We don’t treat chronic pain. We don’t care if you get your pain medications from someone else too, we don’t want you as a patient.” Wow. What happened to compassionate care and treating the whole patient? Mercy Medical Center and DCIPA could use their resources to bring in a pain specialist, but guess what? They don’t want one. They don’t care about your pain. They just want as much money as they can squeeze out of you or your insurances while you are in their offices or the hospital. So sad that money is more important than human lives.

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