December 10, 2014

5:16 AM | The Overdose Report
I set up a new site today that collects newsfeeds related to the epidemic of opioid dependence and posts links to the articles.  Some of the news stories strike a sensational tone, as opposed to the somber nature of the content— and my intention was not to create a website fashioned after an episode of […]

December 05, 2014

6:16 PM | ESA Policy News December 5: House floats FY 2015 spending deal, NEON scrutinized, Apply for 2015 GSPA
Here are some highlights from the latest ESA Policy New […]

December 04, 2014

7:00 PM | Health Privacy at the Pharmacy
First Posted 12/20/2013 In the middle of an already-hectic schedule, my office received a call from a pharmacist at Roundy’s Pharmacy, Sheboygan WI saying that he couldn’t fill a script for oxycodone without the patient’s ICD-9 number.  The ICD-9 is soon to be replaced by ICD-10, a system that applies numbers to every medical illness […]

November 29, 2014

4:07 AM | Bangor to Maine: Too Much Suboxone Treatment!
First Posted 11/26/2013 As I read about the moratorium on buprenorphine treatment programs in Bangor, Maine, I thought about the scene from the movie Titanic where the people who found safety in lifeboats struggled to keep those in the water from climbing aboard. The Bangor city council recently voted to impose a moratorium on expanding buprenorphine treatment […]

November 28, 2014

4:10 AM | Quantitative Urine Drug Testing and Buprenorphine: Tainted Motives?
First Posted 11/23/2013 As fear of buprenorphine diversion sweeps the nation, some states have passed legislation adding more rules for practices that treat addiction using buprenorphine.    Never mind that buprenorphine is linked to about 400 deaths over ten years, one tenth of the number of deaths from acetaminophen during that same time, and 0.1% of […]

November 27, 2014

12:36 AM | Buprenorphine Diversion: Beyond a Superficial Understanding
First Posted 11/19/2013 In ‘Addiction Treatment with a Dark Side’, Deborah Sontag of the New York Times shared her observations of the clinical use of buprenorphine for treating opioid dependence, warts and all.  Readers of the Talk Zone know my bias—that buprenorphine/Suboxone is one of the only effective treatments for opioid dependence, and many patients […]

November 24, 2014

6:15 PM | Pregnant Taking Suboxone: Should Social Services be Involved?
First Posted 11/4/2013 I recently saw a new patient who described treating her own opioid dependence with diverted Suboxone.  She sheepishly described reading everything she could find about buprenorphine and meticulously using half of her friend’s medication to avoid other opioids, without fail, for four years. She would likely be treating herself now, if she […]
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