Caught in the cross-hairs: chronic pain patients
Brain studies show that dependence on pain meds is NOT the same thing as addiction; in fact, dependence and addiction show up in entirely different parts of the brain. And chronic pain patients’ lives stand to be derailed by pain, NOT by addiction. So the opioid epidemic raises an ethical question for doctors: how to best meet the needs of chronic pain patients while using potentially addictive medications?
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