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For Scott M. Fishman, MD, It's Just Too Late to be SorryMarianne Skolek Salem-News.com
Doctor whose book pushed dangerous Opioids AKA 'Painkillers' can't erase his past
(MYRTLE BEACH, SC) - Scott M. Fishman, MD tries to close the barn door, but will officials buy into it since the rate of deaths and addictions has reached epidemic proportion because of his down playing the risks of opioids for almost a decade?
Scott M. Fishman, MD, Chief of Division of Pain Medicine at University of California, Davis wrote a book in 2007 entitled "Responsible Opioid Prescribing - A Physician's Guide" sponsored by the Federation of State Medical Boards. Dr. Fishman and his physician guidebook are both under U.S. Senate investigation for alleged profiteering from pharma in pushing painkillers for long-term use with little fear of addiction or death.
The guidebook was used as a "model" to encourage physicians in 50 states and Canada to safely prescribe dangerous opioids aka painkillers to their patients. Now we fast forward to 2014 and Dr. Fishman's employer, University of California, Davis is sponsoring a conference in April 2014 which is outlined below.
What is of particular interest in this conference is that Fishman is now a conference director with a co-director being a "veterinarian" (Dr. Rosane Oliveira) and the 4 day agenda will focus on pain relief. After being rewarded by pharma for almost a decade for his downplaying the risks of opioids to addiction and death, he is now taking a path of yoga, nutrition and alternative treatments for pain -- and with a veterinarian.
University of California, Davis
Integrative Health for Pain Relief
April 3 - 6, 2014
Makena Beach & Golf Resort
Conference Directors - University of California, Davis
Scott M. Fishman, MD, Chief, Division of Pain Medicine
Rosane Oliveira, DVM, PhD - Director of Integrative Medicine Programs
Join us for a continuing medical education experimental learning event where we will review the latest integrative health approaches for pain relief, the genetic and environmental contributors of pain, and business models for a success for patient centered integrative medicine practice.
The objective of this conference is to provide current, scientific evidence on complementary and alternative medicine approaches used to relieving pain and suffering, such as acupuncture, mindfulness based stress reduction, yoga, and nutrition intervention. The format will focus on evidence based discussions, helping health care practitioners understand the benefits and risks of those treatments and how to integrate them into a patient specific management plan, which will ultimately translate into improved patient outcomes.
Day 1 - Mind - Body techniques for stress reduction and pain relief
Day 2 - Genetics, Microblome and nutrition in pain medicine
Day 3 - Wellness - Focused Healthcare
Day 4 - Traditional, complementary and integrative medicine
Scratching for more information are you?
On Thursday, April 3 Dr. Fishman's talk will be "The Quest for Pain Relief: A History of Fragmentation - A Future of Integration."
On Friday, April 4 Dr. Oliveira (the veterinarian) will be discussing "Diet, your Genes, Microbes and You."
On Saturday, April 5 Dr. Oliveira's talk will be "Change your Mind to Change your Body - Motivating and Engaging Patients."
In 2006, the University of California, Davis held a conference on "The War on Pain" quite difference from the one being held in 2014 -- and also it was held in Maui, Hawaii. This conference listed Scott M. Fishman, MD and other physicians and their topics relating to the treatment of pain -- with no mention of yoga, nutrition or alternative remedies to pain -- and no veterinarian on the panel. Here is the program from 2006:
"The War on Pain"
UC Davis Review and Update of Pain and Palliative Medicine
Oct. 29 - Nov. 2, 2006
Grand Wailea Hotel, Maui, Hawaii
This conference is designed to help front-line health professionals (physicians, psychologists, nurses and other allied health-care professionals) better care for their patients who are suffering from pain.
Medscape: The stated mission of the AAPM is to promote quality care for patients with pain through research, education, advocacy, and advancement of the specialty of pain medicine. What do you think are the greatest barriers to accomplishing the goals of this mission?
Dr. Fishman: ..........Doctors must look at pain not just as a symptom, but also as a disease in its own right. Pain itself becomes a disease when the organ involved with perpetuating the alarm of pain becomes damaged and doesn't shut off, leaving the patient with chronic pain. The number of people suffering from chronic pain is huge, exceeding that of many other chronic diseases into which we've put many more resources.........
Medscape: Controversy surrounds both the undertreatment and overtreatment of pain. Overtreatment of pain obviously involves the fear of causing or perpetuating opioid drug dependency. What recommendations can you give to primary care physicians who are reluctant to prescribe opioids, either as adjuncts or primary agents for pain control, because of these fears?
Dr. Fishman: .....It used to be that when you had a patient with pain and you were worried about giving him or her a drug that may be abusable or may cause addiction, the safest thing to do was nothing, as though doing nothing would have no risks in and of itself. We know that the risks of addiction are there, but they are small and can be managed. The AAPM is going to be at the forefront, educating physicians about the difference between analgesia and the outcomes of addiction, which are really diametrically the opposite, because addiction manifests with dysfunction and good analgesia manifests with improved function........
Currently on the University of California, Davis website is an interview they conducted several years ago with Dr. Fishman regarding pain treatment -- and again the highlights from the interview are shown -- and with no mention of yoga, nutrition or alternative measures in the treatment of pain.
UC Davis: Health disparities is an emerging issue. What disparities exist in pain treatment and what can be done about them?
Dr. Fishman: ...... Another false perception about pain involves children. The medical community seems to bring so much of its resources to bear when a child is ill, yet children are routinely undertreated for pain. We continue to perpetuate myths that children don't feel pain or that somehow pain builds character. Children left untreated for pain suffer significant harm including major emotional trauma that directly undermines their ability to heal. Some children can't complain as loudly or clearly, or they present differently when in pain. For an infant in pain, he or she may simply withdraw, appearing depressed or lethargic. Appropriate assessment and management can be very different in children from adult.
Hopefully the U.S. Senate, Congress, DEA and Attorneys General recognize that between 2006 and 2014, the horse was let out of the barn and Dr. Fishman held the door wide open to the world of opioid addiction and death -- and yoga, nutrition and alternative measures in the treatment of pain is a little too late. The encouragement by physicians to prescribe opioids with Fishman leading the charge has resulted in tens of thousands of addictions and deaths in the U.S. and Canada. Ultimately infants would have been exposed to the horrific world of addiction -- and curiously how could Dr. Fishman in good conscience reference infants appearing depressed?
Maybe between yoga, nutrition and alternative measures in the treatment of pain, Dr. Fishman will have time in his schedule at the conference on the sunny beaches of Hawaii in April to challenge his co-director, the veterinarian to a good old-fashioned game of cow chip tossing -- since he appears to be wading in them.
LP - yes 2014 will be a good year for a crop of buttercups and it certainly has become my favorite flower. Thanks for believing in me as I believe in you -- and loving me as I love you.
Marianne Skolek https://twitter.com/
Investigative Reporter for Salem-News.com covering OxyContin and prescription drug epidemic in the U.S. and Canada