Opioids and The Addiction Crisis
The aptly named “Opioid Crisis” has been a hot topic in the media as of late. Should big pharmaceutical companies be held accountable for misleading both the medical community and the patients who were led to believe that they were not taking an addictive substance? The answer is a resounding “yes.” This article provides a historical view of the Opioid Crisis, the research behind opioid addiction, and steps to take if you or a loved one have been affected by this addiction.
The History and Ensuing Addiction
The history of the Opioid Crisis is one built on misinformation. The medical community and those who began taking opioids simply to find relief from pain were convinced that these prescription medications were “not addictive and were purely beneficial.” While pain relief can be essential in times of physical distress, what some patients didn’t bargain for was a much bigger battle than the pain: addiction. According to Neural IT, the belief that opioids were not addictive caused physicians to prescribe them more frequently, raising sales and resulting in abuse of these drugs, “to the extent that this was identified by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) as a public issue and named [sic] an ‘Opioid Crisis.’”
The first trial in the United States seeking to hold pharmaceutical companies responsible for “creating a public health crisis by flooding the state with powerful opioid-based painkillers” began in May 2019, according to Courtroom View Network. There has been global interest in this case (State of Oklahoma vs. Purdue Pharma, LP et. al.). While this is the first case to allege that the Opioid Crisis is a result of Big Pharma flooding the market with powerful, addictive painkillers, it will certainly not be the last.
The Center for Disease Control relays some astounding facts related to opioids and addiction:
- “From 1999 to 2017, more than 700,000 people have died from a drug overdose.
- Around 68% of the more than 70,200 drug overdose deaths in 2017 involved an opiod.
- In 2017, the number of overdose deaths involving opioids (including prescription opioids and illegal opioids like heroin and illicitly manufactured fentanyl) was 6 times higher than in 1999.
- On average, 130 Americans die every day from opioid overdose.”
Georgia is no exception to these harrowing statistics. In fact, according to Georgia Public Broadcasting, “The Georgia Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Disabilities recently received a $10.3 million grant from the Department of Health and Human Services” to help the state of Georgia battle the opioid crisis happening in our state.
Steps Toward Freedom from Opioids
In order to free yourself or someone you love from opioid addiction, it’s first necessary to know and understand the signs of addiction. This article from the world-renowned Mayo Clinic has a full list of signs of opioid abuse. Once abuse has been determined, the Mayo Clinic suggests seeking help as soon as possible–waiting in order to avoid conflict with a loved one is not recommended. Seek help as soon as possible by talking to a doctor and establish a pathing toward freedom from opioids.
Marks Law Group, LLC can help you navigate the waters of seeking financial restitution from pharmaceutical companies. Please call us at 400-800-1625 to begin the journey to freedom from opioids.