There are an abundant amount of discussions throughout the internet among patients taking hydrocodone. The most important part of these discussions is that people are feeling alone, unheard, and without any support. They have been given opioid painkillers for years, even decades, by prescribing physicians in order to manage pain symptoms. With the new hydrocodone law’s, patients are suddenly cut off from their prescriptions without a plan to control pain or adequate assistance to undergo a detox. These patients, rightfully so, become overwhelmed with fear which leads to desperation.
New Hydrocodone Prescription Laws
Since October of 2014 patients who use hydrocodone drugs have had a much tougher time acquiring prescriptions.
Hydrocodone is a popular pain reliever and cough suppressant in many parts of the world. Drug makers routinely combine hydrocodone with ibuprofen and other analgesics to improve the therapeutic action of both drugs. Patients suffering from acute or chronic pain, likely due to cancer or surgery, rely on this opioid drug, which comes from extracts of the opium poppy plant. Hydrocodone and hydrocodone combination products are available only by prescription.
The U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) is the federal agency responsible for categorizing drugs and creating laws controlling the use of those drugs under the Controlled Substances Act. The agency had classified hydrocodone combination products as Schedule III drugs, meaning the drugs posed only a minor to moderate risk for abuse and addiction.
It is a tough challenge when physicians recognize their patients are in pain, but cannot prescribe specific medications (mainly opioids) because of how laws are written, due partially to the irresponsible prescribing practice of others. Pain specialists are hesitant and even fearful, of prescribing specific medications. Breaking these laws may result in doctors arrests fines, loss of medical license, or perhaps all three.
Hydrocodone abuse rates have risen sharply in the past decades. Drugs are more potent and for a long while, easier to get. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), enough prescription pain relievers were sold in 2010 to medicate every American adult with 5 mg of hydrocodone, every four hours, for an entire month. This excessive use of hydrocodone led to widespread abuse and recreational use. The increase of people suffering from hydrocodone addiction led many families to unspoken suffering.
In response to widespread misuse of this opioid painkiller, the DEA reclassified hydrocodone products from a Schedule III to Schedule II. The hope was that this change would reduce access to the drug and further misuse.
The final regulation was active on October 6, 2014. At that time, that doctors could no longer phone in a prescription for hydrocodone. Instead, patients must physically present a written prescription to the pharmacist. Furthermore, although physicians may write multiple orders to give patients, they cannot provide refills. The change in classification also means that drug suppliers must re-label hydrocodone products, which will inevitably slow down supply lines to consumers.
Hydrocodone Schedule Changes Effects
When responsible prescribing creates more pain
It is essential to know, that Hydrocodone leads to physical dependence when you continuously take enough of it and for a certain amount of time. Although a large number of patients believe they have been adversely affected, the schedule changes also have positive results. Since those changes, the requirement to see the doctor to acquire additional prescriptions, helps the patient receive better health management. Furthermore, these new requirements will certainly reduce prescription fraud, particularly those by telephone. Having the knowledge of a physicians DEA number has been a significant issue on fraudulent calls to pharmacies, in order to illegally obtain prescription opioids. DEA officials hope that schedule changes will reduce the amount of hydrocodone available for recreational use and abuse in the long run.
We cannot forget, that patients who are taking hydrocodone for a long time, are likely to be physically dependent. If there is sudden prescription discontinuation, the patient may have to suffer through painful symptoms of hydrocodone withdrawal. Withdrawal symptoms without proper management can cause an extra and unfair burden, to those patients already in pain. It is important to evaluate each case separately, carefully and responsibly, so more to limit additional unnecessary suffering.
Treatment for Opioid Use Disorder and Hydrocodone Abuse
Finding the best treatment for Hydrocodone Abuse
Individuals suffering from hydrocodone addiction or dependence may benefit from medical treatment that eases the inevitable withdrawal symptoms. WAISMANN METHOD ® is a medical detoxication center, that provides patients a safe and effective treatment option to overcome a hydrocodone withdrawal. Waismann Institute provides not just for its superior safety protocols, but some of the highest success rates in opioid detox history. The Waismann team provides superior around the clock care under the medical direction of Dr. Michael Loweinstein. Furthermore, at the Waismann center, patients have the choice of a number of different treatments for opioids and alcohol abusee. From rapid detoxification under sedation to medically assisted detox without anesthesia and other forms of addiction treatment at Domus Retreat.
WAISMANN METHOD® work with you to create the adequate treatment and aftercare plans adequate to your physical and emotional needs. Our treatment goal is to provide you with a healthy and productive transition to a life without hydrocodone dependence. If you are feeling alone and don’t know what to do, gives us a call. We will discuss all the different options available for you to get through a hydrocodone withdrawal. A treatment that can be confidential, fast and effective; one that is much less scary than you might think.
Learn about how rapid detox speeds your path to recovery. Let us listen to your story and help you get where you want to be.