Dr. Michael Lowenstein: Increase in Opioid Use for Abdominal Pain Part of Larger Problem

Michael Lowenstein, MD, co-medical director for the Waismann Method, a procedure for rapid opiate detox, warns that a study showing an increase in opioids prescribed for abdominal pain shows the increased popularity of opioids regardless of the source or cause of pain, according to a news release.

"Potential side effects of prescription painkillers include gastrointestinal symptoms, like constipation, nausea, vomiting, bloating and cramping, which can lead to more severe abdominal pain," said Dr. Lowenstein. "The fact that physicians are prescribing opiate medications for persistent abdominal pain indicates that prescription painkillers have become a go-to treatment to instantly satisfy patients' demands, without really understanding if there are advantages of their use. This study indicates physicians may be prescribing opiate painkillers for almost any symptom or condition without fully evaluating the risks and potentially negative consequences for patients."

Related Articles on Opioids:
American Medical Association to Help Physicians Prevent Misuse and Abuse of Prescription Opioids
7 Recent Studies & Research Findings on Painkillers
Half of Americans Have Used Painkillers

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