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Rise in Opioid Use for Abdominal Pain Points to Larger Problem Warns Waismann Method Medical Director
Date:12/6/2011

BEVERLY HILLS, Calif., Dec. 6, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- A new study, released by the American Gastroenterological Association, shows outpatient clinics across the United States witnessed opiate prescriptions for chronic abdominal pain more than double between 1997 and 2008.  Dr. Michael Lowenstein, co-medical director for the Waismann Method, an advanced procedure for rapid opiate detox, warns that this increase signals the gaining popularity of prescription painkillers and its general use to treat any type of pain, regardless of the source or cause.

"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."

According to the study, while outpatient visits for chronic abdominal pain decreased between 1997 and 2008 from 14.8 million to 12.2 million visits, opiate prescriptions to treat these patients significantly rose.  Opiates were prescribed for 5.9 percent of chronic abdominal pain cases from 1997 through 1999.  From 2006 through 2008, the number of chronic abdominal pain cases treated with prescription painkillers rose to 12.2 percent.  The study also shows that while opiate prescriptions were l
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SOURCE Waismann Method
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