Eye On Health: Opioid Addiction

Eye On Health: Opioid Addiction


. IN THIS WEEK’S EYE ON HEALTH, THE FOCUS IS ON A SERIOUS EPIDEMIC, OPIOID ADDICTION, SEEMS LIKE EVERYONE HAS A FRIEND, LOVED ONE OR A FAMILY MEMBER WITH AN ADDICTION PROBLEM, OR MAYBE THEY HAVE ONE THEMSELVES. SOME SEE AS AN ADDICTION OR MORAL ISSUE, OUR PARTNERS ARE WORKING TO CHANGE THAT PERCEPTION AND REDUCE THE SIGMA OF ADDICTION IN A CONTINUED WAR ON OPIOID, THEY JUST GOT A NEW WEAPON IN THEIR ARSENAL TO FIGHT THAT WAR. HERE TO TELL US MORE IS THE STRATEGIC EXECUTIVE AT HIGHMARK. IT IS VERY NICE TOP HERE WITH PTL AUDIENCE. WE’RE HAPPY TO HAVE YOU, THIS IS SOMETHING TRULY IMPACTS NOT IN WESTERN PENNSYLVANIA BUT ACROSS THE WORLD, WE’VE SEEN STAGGERING NUMBERS. SO LET’S TALK ABOUT REALLY WHAT OPIOID ADDICTION IS HOW IT GETS STARTED IN A LOT OF PEOPLE. OPIOID ADDICTION STARTS WITH MEDICATIONS, OPIOIDS, THAT CAN CONTROL PAIN. BUT THEY ALSO AFFECT THE PLEASURE SENATORS OF THE BRAIN. THOSE PLEASURE SENSORS OVER TIME REQUIRE MORE AND MORE OPIOIDS TO JUST MAINTAIN A SENSE OF WELL BEING AND WHEN THAT HAPPENS PEOPLE ESCALATE THEIR DOSE, AT ONE POINT MAY TURN TO INJECTION DRUGS SUCH AS HEROIN. THERE IS GOOD NEWS YOU GUYS HAVE GOTTEN A $5 MILLION GRANT. HOW WILL THAT HELP IN YOUR PROGRAM? THAT WILL HELP WITH THE AGE AND OUTREACH WHICH IS VERY IMPORTANT TO SUPPORT THE DEVELOPMENT OF PROGRAMS. YOU GUYS HAVE STARTED THIS INITIATIVE AWHILE AGO WITH A THREE PRONG APPROACH, TELL US WHAT THE THREE PRONGS ARE. THE THREE-PRONG APPROACH REALLY CONSISTS OF THE FIRST PRONG WHICH IS DECREASING THE AMOUNT OF OPIOIDS PRESCRIBED THIS SLOWLY STARTED IN THE 1990’S THINKING IT WAS SAFE IN OPIOIDS AND INCREASING THE AMOUNT OF OPIOIDS. TO DECREASE THE AMOUNT OF OPIOIDS THROUGH EDUCATION THROUGH PHYSICIANS, FEEDBACK AS TO THEIR PRESCRIBING PATTERNS ALSO PUTTING SOME LIMITS ON THE AMOUNT OF OPIOIDS THAT ARE PRESCRIBED. SO ACTUALLY IN 2018 YOU WERE ABLE TO REDUCE THE AMOUNT OF OPIOID PRESCRIPTIONS GIVEN OUT IN OUR MEMBERSHIP BY 15%. THAT’S INCREMENTAL IMPROVEMENT. THAT PEOPLE THAT HAVE PAIN, ARE TREATED WITH NONNARCOTIC THERAPY. THESE ARE NATIONAL GUIDELINES PUT OUT BY THE CENTERS FOR DISEASE CONTROL. FOR THOSE INDIVIDUALS WHO ARE ON OPIOIDS TO REDUCE THE DOSE. ALSO TO USE ALTERNATIVE THERAPY SUCH AS PHYSICAL THERAPY, CHIROPRACTIC, ACUPUNCTURE. PEOPLE THAT HAVE CHRONIC PAIN, IF THEY ARE MANAGING THIS, THERE ARE OTHER ALTERNATIVES AS WELL. ABSOLUTELY. IT IS REALLY A MULTIDISCIPLINARY APPROACH TO PAIN MANAGEMENT. YOUR PRIMARY CARE PHYSICIAN MAY BE THE ONE THAT STARTS YOU WITH MANAGING YOUR PAIN, OVERTIME, AS YOUR PAIN BECOMES FOR SOME INDIVIDUAL MORE COMPLEX, IT MAY REQUIRE A REFERRAL TO A PAIN MANAGEMENT SPECIALIST, WHAT’S REALLY UNIQUE WITH THESE DRUGS IN PARTICULAR IS THAT PEOPLE FEEL THE PAIN, BECAUSE YOU WERE TALKING ABOUT YOU NEED MORE AND MORE OF THE OPIOID, THEY TRULY DO FEEL THE PAIN AND FEEL LIKE THEY REALLY NEED MORE TO SUPPRESS THAT. ABSOLUTELY. AND IT TAKES OVER THE BRAIN. IT ACTUALLY REWIRES THE BRAIN AND THAT GETS TO A VERY IMPORTANT POINT THAT YOU STARTED MENTIONING IS THAT IN A RECENT SURVEY THAT HIGHMARK CONDUCTED WITH ITS MEMBERSHIP, 9 OUT OF 10 INDIVIDUALS RESPONDED THAT THEY FELT THAT ADDICTION WAS A MORAL FAILING. THIS IS NOTHING FURTHER FROM THE TRUTH, IT IS A REWIRING OF THE BRAIN. YOU, MYSELF, WE COULD ALL BECOME ADDICTED AND WON’T BECOME OURSELVES. SO WHAT WE NEED TO DO IS WE NEED TO REACH OUT TO INDIVIDUALS WITH ADDICTION AND GET THEM INTO EFFECTIVE TREATMENT. THIS CAN REALLY TAKEOVER, YOU CAN’T CONTROL HOW YOUR BRAIN REACTS TOO, OPIOIDS DOES WHAT IT DOES. LET’S TALK ABOUT SOME OF THE WAYS PEOPLE CAN SEEK HELP. WOMEN, CHILDREN, SOME OTHERS WHO MAY NEED AT HELP WOMEN ARE IN PARTICULAR AT RISK WHEN THEY ARE PREGNANT BECAUSE THEIR UNBORN BABY COULD BE EXPOSED TO INJECTION SUBSTANCES, BACTERIA, VIRUSES, LACK OF PRENATAL CARE, BIRTH DEFECTS, LEARNING VISIBILITIES, A SYNDROME WHERE THEY ARE BORN ADDICTED. WE HAVE VERY SPECIAL PROGRAMS IN PITTSBURGH IN PARTICULAR AT WEST PENN HOSPITAL. THE PROGRAM WHICH IS A MULTIDISCIPLINARY APPROACH TO TREATING WOMEN WHO SPECIFICALLY HAVE ADDICTION, THAT STARTS BEFORE THE DELIVERY DURING THE DELIVERY AND AFTER THE DELIVERY, I THINK WE’LL BE SHARING THAT NUMBER ON THE SCREEN WITH YOU. WE’LL GET THAT. ALSO SOMETHING THAT’S UNIQUE, TRYING TO HELP CHILDREN WHO ARE GRIEVING BECAUSE THEY’VE LOST A PARENT IN THIS, THAT’S SO SAD THAT THERE IS HELP OUT THERE, RIGHT? THERE IS. THIS IS A TERRIBLE EPIDEMIC, MANY PARENTS HAVE PASSED AWAY FROM THIS, THERE ARE CHILDREN WHO ARE GRIEVING AND GRANDPARENTS AND EXTENDED FAMILY. HIGHMARK HAS THE CARING PLACE IN DOWNTOWN PITTSBURGH, WE CAN SHARE THE NUMBER WITH YOU, WE INVITE YOU TO COME AND VISIT THE CARING PLACE SOME DAY BUT IT DOES TREMENDOUS WORK TO HELP WITH THE GRIEVING PROCESS FOR FAMILIES. WE CAN HAVE THIS CONVERSATION FOR HOURS, WE THANK YOU FOR JOINING US FOR A FEW MINUTES HERE ON THE COUCH. KEEP WATCHING FOR OUR EYE ON HEALTH SERIES HERE ON PTL,

One comment

  1. Nice content, I subscribed! This deserves way more views, I’d recommend using followsm dot com to grow your channel.

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