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Are Oxycontin Doctors Overmedicating Kids to Death?Marianne Skolek Salem-News.com
"There have been tyrants and murderers and for a time they seem invincible but in the end, they always fall -- think of it -- ALWAYS." Mahatma Gandhi
(MYRTLE BEACH, S.C.) - In June 2010, I wrote about Lisa Humphrey, MD, Medical Director of the Pediatric Palliative Care Program at Rainbow Babies & Children's Hospital in Cleveland, Ohio who was quoted as saying -- "Recognizing and treating pain in children can be a challenge. Unlike adults, kids may not cry or complain when in pain."
The good doctor further stated that children exhibit other symptoms such as refusing to eat or drink, becoming quiet, withdrawn, having sleep problems, are fussy and have changes in mood or behavior. "If their child is not acting like themselves" Humphrey says, "then we should look at pain management so children can go back to their job at hand, which is to have fun and explore."
I challenged Humphrey's pain management of children by asking if the medical profession would be treating them for addiction to opioids when they become teenagers.
In 2009, the maker of OxyContin, Purdue Pharma attempted to market for "the undertreatment of pain in newborns and pediatric patients" as well as for something they called "pregnancy pain." I made a complaint to a government agency against Purdue Pharma and the FDA forced them to discontinue this frightening marketing tactic. I knew Purdue Pharma would find another means of marketing in their effort to addict even the most vulnerable of people -- children. How far behind is the undertreatment of pain in pregnant women?
So why the push for pain management of children -- and I'm not writing of cancer pain -- I am writing of something as routine as a tonsillectomy.
This push for the undertreatment of pain in children -- where is it coming from? Purdue Pharma? No, they don't have to risk marketing for the undertreatment of pain in pediatric patients and having their wrists slapped. Why? Because they fund the following pain societies to do their marketing for them:
This country is experiencing a tsunami of prescription drug death, addiction and abuse -- and we haven't seen anything yet. As long as pharmaceutical companies without a conscience such as Purdue Pharma continue to push the undertreatment of pain -- and direct it at defenseless children -- we have a true national health crisis looming ahead of us.
In April, I wrote that Purdue Pharma was advertising for clinical studies in the treatment of "moderate" to "severe" pain in children ages 6 to 16. Every state in the country should see the tsunami headed their way in the next couple of years because of the criminal marketing used in pushing narcotics to not only adults -- but now children. If there is any doubt that we are not headed for a national crisis of unbelievable proportion, consider what these funded pain societies of Purdue Pharma advertise on their websites.
One example is shown below:
The Use of Opioids for the Treatment of Chronic Pain
Current information and experience suggest that many commonly held assumptions need modification. Studies indicate that the de novo development of addiction when opioids are used for the relief of pain is low.
Diversion of controlled substances should be a concern of every health professional, but efforts to stop diversion should not interfere with prescribing opioids for pain management. The mission of the American Pain Society is to serve people in pain by advancing research, education, treatment, and professional practice. The undertreatment of pain in today's society is not justified.
The "undertreatment of pain" in America will not destroy us -- but the tsunami of death and addiction will -- all generated by Purdue Pharma's shrewd marketing of OxyContin.
LP - Love, and a cough, cannot be hid. ~ George Herbert, Jacula Prudentum, 1651
Salem-News.com Reporter Marianne Skolek, is an Activist for Victims of OxyContin and Purdue Pharma throughout the United States and Canada. In July 2007, she testified against Purdue Pharma in Federal Court in Virginia at the sentencing of their three CEO's - Michael Friedman, Howard Udell and Paul Goldenheim - who pleaded guilty to charges of marketing OxyContin as less likely to be addictive or abused to physicians and patients. She also testified against Purdue Pharma at a Judiciary Hearing of the U.S. Senate in July 2007. Marianne works with government agencies and private attorneys in having a voice for her daughter Jill, who died in 2002 after being prescribed OxyContin, as well as the voice for scores of victims of OxyContin. She has been involved in her work for the past 8-1/2 years and is currently working on a book that exposes Purdue Pharma for their continued criminal marketing of OxyContin.
Marianne is a nurse having graduated in 1991 as president of her graduating class. She also has a Paralegal certification. Marianne served on a Community Service Board for the Courier News, a Gannet newspaper in NJ writing articles predominantly regarding AIDS patients and their emotional issues. She was awarded a Community Service Award in 1993 by the Hunterdon County, NJ HIV/AIDS Task Force in recognition of and appreciation for the donated time, energy and love in facilitating a Support Group for persons with HIV/AIDS.
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