For the first time, the country’s two leading professional organizations devoted to pain medicine jointly released comprehensive guidelines for physicians using opioids to treat patients with chronic non-cancer pain.
The recommendations, published in the Feb. 6 Journal of Pain, are intended to help doctors navigate the tricky terrain of caring for the estimated 9% of Americans living with severe chronic pain while averting recreational use and diversion (www.jpain.org/article/piis1526590008008316/abstract/).
Meanwhile, the Food and Drug Administration announced plans to work with manufacturers of 24 long-release opioids to develop a single plan to manage the risk of opioid misuse and overdoses. The plan could include some sort of education requirement for doctors prescribing these opioids.
The whole shebang.