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Substance dependence drives significant health care costs for payors through a combination of factors that include acute inpatient utilization and unaddressed co-morbidities. The Substance Dependence problem is pervasive, largely untreated and costly. Stay informed on these topics by visiting our blog periodically. You can also sign up for the Catasys On Healthcare Newsletter to receive the latest in health care news. » Sign Up for Newsletter
By Bobby Magill For Susan Barnes, having her son slip away from her for eight long years was like watching a slow death.
“I knew it was coming,” she said. “As if it was somebody who had Alzheimer’s or Parkinson’s, it was coming, and I saw it.”
Susan’s son, Alex Barnes, first showed signs of schizophrenia when he was 16. On March 12, after receiving periodic treatment for years, he parked his bike on the shoulder of Mason Street, knelt down beside a slow-moving freight train and ended his life beneath a box car. He was 24.» More
By Matt Brown U.S. veterans suffering from posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) have a new battle waiting for them when they return home, but family physicians are well-positioned to aid them in the fight.
A recent study (abstract) in JAMA: the Journal of the American Medical Association, investigated the effect of mental health disorders, such as PTSD, on the risks and adverse clinical outcomes associated with prescription opioid use. The study concluded that soldiers returning from Iraq and Afghanistan who have such mental health diagnoses, particularly PTSD, are at an "increased risk of receiving opioids for pain, high-risk opioid use and adverse clinical outcomes."» More
Provided by University of Chicago Medical Center Opioid drugs used to relieve pain in postoperative and chronic cancer patients may stimulate the growth and spread of tumors, according to two studies and a commentary in the 2012 annual Journal Symposium issue of Anesthesiology, the academic journal of the American Society of Anesthesiologists.
"Epidemiologic findings suggest that the type of anesthesia we do for cancer surgery influences recurrence rate, and laboratory studies demonstrate that opioids influence tumor progression and metastasis," said Jonathan Moss, MD, PhD, professor of anesthesiology and critical care at the University of Chicago Medicine and co-author of the commentary, a summary of research on the topic. "These studies have caused anesthesiologists to re-evaluate how best to do anesthesia and pain control for cancer patients."» More
More than One-in-Four Women take Medication to Treat a Mental Health Condition
WASHINGTON, March 19, 2012 /PRNewswire via COMTEX/ -- Women far outpace their male counterparts when it comes to the consumption of mental health medications, with 25 percent using at least one psychotropic drug as compared to 15 percent of men. These are findings from research by Medco Health Solutions, Inc. MHS +0.64% that were presented Saturday at the 2012 Women's Health Congress.
The study reviewed the pharmacy claims of more than two million insured Americans and assessed the use of antidepressants, antipsychotics, anti-anxiety medications and drugs to treat attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) between 2001 and 2010.» More
By Michael Booth, The Denver Post Deaths linked to prescription opioid use have doubled in 10 years in Colorado, and the steep increases in both legal use and dangerous abuse of painkillers are forcing the medical community to rethink the way it treats chronic pain.
Painkiller prescriptions written by the top 10 Medicaid prescribers for one popular drug, Roxicodone, shot up 46 percent last year, according to state records. Denver's Office of Drug Strategy found that prescriptions filled for oxycodone rose 58 percent from 2007 to 2011.» More
By Daniel Cook Older patients who are prescribed opioids following ambulatory surgery are more likely to become addicted to the powerful painkillers, according to a study in the Archives of Internal Medicine.
Canadian researchers say about 10% of the nearly 28,000 patients, 66 years of age and older, who were given opioids within 7 days of cataract surgery, laparoscopic cholecystectomy, transurethral resection of the prostate or varicose vein stripping were identified as long-term opioid users at 1 year post-op.» More