In Search of the Best Pain Clinic in LA: Steering Clear of Pill Mills, Creating a New Problem

By | February 26, 2012

Long-term opiate administration is an excellent business model but it's lousy medicine.

The staple of the pill mill is the long-term administration of oral opiates. In the beginning it seems like the Vicodin is really helping. The patients report that they have significantly less pain, but after a couple of months the old dose of Vicodin doesn’t seem to work as well any more so the patients ask for a little more. After another couple of months the patients usually report that they predictably have pain 4 or 5 hours after they took their last pill and so they ask about something that lasts a little longer, like Oxycontin. It’s a great business model, because once you get the patient hooked on the narcotics they have to come back every month forever to get their fix, but it’s lousy medicine

I have never seen a chronic pain patient that I believe really benefited from long-term oral opiate therapy. All you do is give the patient another problem, opiate dependence. At the best pain Clinic in LA opiates would be prescribed for very specific indications and always for a finite period of time. We at Schlesinger Pain Centers see narcotics as a useful temporary therapy while definitive treatment is being implemented.


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