opioid abuse

Use Of Drug Database Increases Amid Opioid Fight

Sep 21, 2018
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One of Florida’s main weapons to thwart “doctor shopping” has been expanding substantially after the passage of a tough new law aimed at addressing the continuing opioid crisis.

Daylina Miller/Health News Florida

Learning disabilities and other special education needs are common in children born with opioid-related symptoms from their mother's drug use while pregnant, according to the first big U.S. study to examine potential long-term problems in these infants.

It started with a rolled ankle during a routine training exercise.

Shannon Hubbard never imagined it was the prologue to one of the most debilitating pain conditions known to exist, called ­­­­­­­complex regional pain syndrome.

It's a condition that causes the nervous system to go haywire, creating pain disproportionate to the actual injury. It can also affect how the body regulates temperature and blood flow.

For most of her childhood, growing up in southeastern Pennsylvania, Kelly Zimmerman felt alone and anxious.

She despaired when her mother was depressed or working late shifts; when her parents fought nonstop; when her friends wanted to come over, and she felt too ashamed to let them see her home's buckling floor, the lack of running water.

Kelly tried to shut out those feelings, and when she was 18, a boyfriend offered her an opioid painkiller — Percocet.

Her anxiety dissolved, at least for a little while.

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People with addiction to opioids and their support network can get instant, anonymous help in seeking treatment. 

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An appeals court Wednesday overturned a ruling that said a state law aimed at cracking down on pain-management clinics was unconstitutional. 

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Six U.S. states on Tuesday sued the maker of the opioid OxyContin of using deceptive marketing to boost drug sales that fueled opioid overdose deaths.

Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi is suing five major drug manufacturers, as well as drug distributors in a "comprehensive" lawsuit aimed at punishing them for the spread of opioid addiction.

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Acupuncturists and physical therapists are waging a war --- over needles.

As a growing opioid epidemic has made patients leery of continued use of the drugs, the Florida Board of Physical Therapy has proposed a rule that would authorize certain physical therapists to treat patients with a “dry needling” technique.

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A Florida doctor has been convicted in a woman's fatal opioid overdose.

The Tallahassee Police Department will be collecting prescription drugs this Saturday as part of National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day. 

New data show that the number of prescriptions for opioid painkillers filled in the U.S. fell dramatically last year. They showed their biggest drop in 25 years.

Florida’s U-S Senators Marco Rubio and Bill Nelson have added a bipartisan proposal to a nationwide opioid bill that could go before the Senate.

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A University of Florida researcher and his team have developed a new tool to help doctors predict whether their patients are at risk of chronic pain. 

Daylina Miller/Health News Florida

In 2016, the city of Miami saw 641 opioid-related overdoses, a 20 percent increase from the year before. Now, attorneys for the city have filed a lawsuit in Miami-Dade County circuit court alleging that drug manufacturers violated Florida law by aggressively and deceptively marketing opioids as safe. 

U.S. Rep. Vern Buchanan announced an anti-drug plan Monday to address the growing opioid crisis. According to the Manatee County Republican, the bill will be introduced in the U.S. House later this week.

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Florida Sens. Bill Nelson and Marco Rubio’s introduced the Protecting Newborns from Opioid Abuse Act on Thursday. It would set up a new system of collecting information around mothers and babies affected by Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome, and sharing it with the Center for Disease Control and Prevention.

The State of US Health, 1990-2016

A national study released Tuesday provides a state-by-state look at life expectancy and the factors that are killing Floridians, and as one might expect, opioid abuse is near the top of the list.

Florida could soon be filing its own opioid abuse lawsuit against drug manufacturers. They’d be joining a long list of states, counties, and cities that have done the same.

Manatee County is trying to turn things around for the youngest victims of the opioid epidemic - children.

Organizations within the community, such as Drug Free Manatee, are working with law enforcement, social service agencies and schools.

UCF Researchers Look At Opioid Abuse In Black Adults

Mar 30, 2018
Daylina Miller/Health News Florida

A new study out of the University of Central Florida finds opioid abuse equally affects whites and blacks even though it is often portrayed as a white, rural epidemic.

Sheila Dhand treats a lot of people who might not step foot in a health clinic or hospital — until an emergency.

"People don't want to show just anybody their wound," Dhand says. "A lot of time when talking about wounds, we're talking about drug use. And those things are so taboo."

Broward County filed a new lawsuit in federal court Monday against manufacturers of opioid drugs.

Walmart, Walgreens, the McKesson Corp. and CVS Health are just some of the drug makers and distributors Broward County is suing.  

 

Others include Johnson & Johnson, Cardinal Health Inc., Health Mart Systems, Mallinckrodt, Amerisourcebergen Corp., as well as Endo Janssen, Purdue, Cephalon and Teva Pharmaceuticals. 

Daylina Miller/Health News Florida

A program to give naloxone overdose-antidote kits and training to front-line officers. Funding for pill disposal boxes in pharmacies, clinics and police stations across North Carolina. A radio campaign in Connecticut warning of the dangers of opioid abuse. A new medicine to treat opioid-induced constipation.

Opioids are on the White House agenda Thursday — President Trump plans to talk with members of his administration about the crisis. Meanwhile, all around the United States, state legislators, treatment providers, families and many others will be listening.

After being delayed twice a proposal restricting physician prescribing powers for opioids is once again moving in the senate. It’s part of a wide-ranging proposal to address overdose deaths, which have jumped in Florida and across the nation in recent years.

House Looking To Earmark $50 Million For Opioid Battle

Jan 24, 2018
Daylina Miller/Health News Florida

The Florida House wants to target $50 million toward opioid treatment and prevention in the upcoming year and spend about $1 million on a statewide prescription-drug database, the top House health-care budget writer said Tuesday.

Seven years ago, Robert Kerley, who makes his living as a truck driver, was loading drywall onto his trailer when a gust of wind knocked him off. He fell 14 feet and hurt his back.

For pain, a series of doctors prescribed him a variety of opioids: Vicodin, Percocet and Oxycontin.

In less than a year, the 45-year-old from Federal Heights, Colo., says he was hooked. "I spent most of my time high, lying on the couch, not doing nothing, sleeping, dozing off, falling asleep everywhere," he says.

Two of Florida’s largest counties, Palm Beach and Broward, have started a process that could take opioid drug makers to court for their roles in the opioid crisis. 

In April this year, Katie Herzog checked into a Boston teaching hospital for what turned out to be a nine-hour-long back surgery.

The 68-year-old consulting firm president left the hospital with a prescription for Dilaudid, an opioid used to treat severe pain, and instructions to take two pills every four hours as needed. Herzog took close to the full dose for about two weeks.

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