The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) just announced a new requirement for prescription pills containing Opioids, such as Oxycontin to have starker warning labels. Its pretty pathetic for the FDA to now (Spetember 2013) be releasing this requirement and statement: “FDA is extremely concerned about the inappropriate use in opioids, which has reached epidemic proportions in the United States and has become a major public health challenge,”. Unreal! Opioids have been an epidemic for years and the FDA is just now releasing this precaution. This is still not enough for our local communities and youth who are struggling with the addiction. These labels should have been placed on the drug as soon as the FDA approved the drugs for distribution.
Some of the most commonly abused opioids are:
- Oxycodone (OxyContin, Percodan, Percocet)
- Propoxyphene (Darvon)
- Hydrocodone (Vicodin, Lortab, Lorcet)
- Hydromorphone (Dilaudid)
- Meperidine (Demerol)
- Diphenoxylate (Lomotil)
- Morphine (Cadian, Avinza, MS Contin)
- Fentanyl (Duragesic)
The new labels will indicate that the drugs are intended for pain “severe enough to require daily, around the clock, long term opioid treatment and for which alternative options are inadequate.” Furthermore the label will indicate because of the risks of addiction, abuse and misuse even for patients which use the drug as directed – opioids should be used only for patients for whom other treatments are not sufficient.
What is the FDA trying to accomplish with this labeling? Its too little too late. Too many of our youths are addicted to the opioids that have been over prescribed by the doctors for years. We need treatment programs in our communities to overcome these addictions not labels.