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Why has there been a rise in the use of opioids?

Eric Egeler, PharmD
Pharmacy Specialist

There has been a rise in the use of opioids because a federal government policy asked the medical community to treat pain as the fifth vital sign out of concern that doctors were not addressing people’s pain. That policy did not require the use of drugs, but it tipped the scale in favor of using stronger medications, such as opioids, rather than Tylenol, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) or alternative therapies.

Trinity Health is a Catholic health care organization that acts in accordance with the Catholic tradition and does not condone or support all practices covered in this site.  In case of emergency call 911. This site is educational and not a substitute for professional medical advice, always seek the advice of a qualified healthcare provider.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.