The inappropriate treatment approach to back pain and post-surgical pain from tonsillectomies and wisdom teeth removal are driving forces behind the opioid epidemic
Insurance claims data reveal 60% of children between the ages of 1 and 18 with private insurance fill one or more opioid prescriptions after surgical tonsil removal. Dentists wrote 18.1 million prescriptions for opioids in 2017
Research shows opioids (including morphine, Vicodin, oxycodone and fentanyl) fail to control moderate to severe pain any better than over-the-counter drugs such as acetaminophen, ibuprofen and naproxen
The American College of Physicians’ guideline for low back pain call for the use of heat, massage, acupuncture or chiropractic adjustments as first-line treatments. When drugs are desired, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs or muscle relaxants should be used
While clinical practice guidelines call for nonpharmacological intervention for back pain, most insurance plans avoid paying for such treatments, favoring opioid treatment instead
Mitragyna speciosa, also known as “kratom,” is a plant native to the rainforests of Southeast Asia that has long been used in traditional herbal medicine to treat pain, boost energy, alleviate anxiety and depression symptoms, and promote feelings of wellness and happiness. But because Continue reading →
Don’t think that you’re going to walk into your health care practitioner’s office and walk out with a prescription for antibiotics in response to your bronchitis.
Since the usual cause of bronchitis is a viral infection, antibiotics aren’t effective at treating this respiratory problem. Antibiotics can only defeat bacterial infections. So most cases of bronchitis don’t require this form of treatment. Continue reading →
And How to Make Sure You’re Never a Victim of…
The Pain Killer Conspiracy
When the pain becomes too much to bear, it’s tempting to reach for the pill bottle, with little or no thought to long-term health consequences. But taking over-the-counter (OTC) and prescription pain medications is as potentially lethal as playing a round of Russian roulette.
It can be scary when your child’s forehead feels abnormally warm to the touch. So it’s only natural for parents to stress over how to treat a fever in their child. But your impulse to bring that fever down immediately with ibuprofen or acetaminophen may not be the best move, according to a new American Academy of Pediatrics clinical report, published in the journal Pediatrics. The reason: Your child’s fever is a physiologic mechanism that has beneficial effects in fighting infection, so reducing the fever may actually hamper healing.
The details: Even when a child has a mild fever, many parents want to administer antipyretics such as acetaminophen and ibuprofen, according to the report. That’s natural; we all want to be reassured by that “normal” 98.6 reading on the thermometer. But according to the AAP researchers, there is no evidence that fever itself worsens the course of an illness, or causes any long-term neurologic complications. “Thus, the primary goal…should be to improve the child’s overall comfort rather than focus on the normalization of body temperature,” the report says. Continue reading →
If you asked the average person what active ingredients are found in their favorite over-the-counter (OTC) painkiller drugs, most would be unable to properly identify them — even if they personally use them. A new study published in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine has found that roughly 69 percent of people surveyed were unaware that McNeil Consumer Healthcare’s painkiller drug Tylenol contains acetaminophen, while an astounding 81 percent had no idea that Pfizer’s Advil contains ibuprofen.
A research team from Northwestern University’s Feinberg School of Medicine sampled Continue reading →
If your child’s temperature was 100.3 degrees, would you consider that a fever? Would you wake him or her to administer an anti-fever medication? If you answered yes to both questions, you have a lot of company. You are also wrong.
A study published in the March issue of the Journal Pediatrics found that roughly half of all parents erroneously believe a body temperature of less than 100.4 degrees is a fever and about 85 percent say they would wake a sleeping child to give medication to lower his temperature. Another one-quarter said they would give OTC anti-fever medicines to kids with temperatures below 100 degrees.
Not only does the study suggest that Dr. Mom and Dr. Dad overreact when they think Continue reading →