Pubdate: Wed, 27 Mar 2002
Source: Anchorage Daily News (AK)
Copyright: 2002 The Anchorage Daily News
Author: Donna Lindsay
Bookmark: (Oxycontin)


I was very disappointed with the biased report on OxyContin called
"Hillbilly Heroin" (March 17).

The Daily News story barely mentioned that this drug is vital in
treating severe chronic pain and that the vast majority of patients
who use this drug use it responsibly. The addiction rate for this
medication is extremely low in chronic pain patients.

I don't take OxyContin, but I do take opiod medications for chronic
pain relief. I've been a support group leader for people with
fibromyalgia for several years and it puts me in contact with a lot of
pain patients. Many of them take OxyContin and for them it is the
difference between living a relatively normal life and staying in bed
day after day. Many of us have lost friendships and even spouses
because people couldn't handle the fact that we take opiod drugs, not
because we are acting like we are drugged but because of the myths
about pain medications. Biased reporting like this does a huge
disservice to legitimate patients.

It is a constant battle to get adequate pain relief for patients when
until recently most physicians were taught not to prescribe them if at
all possible. Patients have a right to pain relief, by law in some
circumstances, and few patients know that. Instead they suffer needlessly.

Donna Lindsay,

Fibromyalgia Support Group of Alaska Eagle River
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