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The New York Times and Vook Publish "A WORLD OF HURT: Fixing Pain Medicine's Biggest Mistake"

NEW YORK, May 30, 2013 /PRNewswire-iReach/ -- A World of Hurt, published by The New York Times and Vook, explores the untold part of the prescription painkiller story – growing evidence that these drugs, along with causing an epidemic of abuse, are often ineffective in treating long-term pain and are harming patients.

Written by Barry Meier , an award-winning reporter for The Times, the new e-book also examines an unfolding medical revolution that will change the thinking of patients and their families.  A decade ago, drug companies and medical experts launched a "War on Pain" that promoted the widespread use of powerful narcotic painkillers for common conditions such as back pain, headaches and fibromyalgia. Specialists claimed that a "bright line" separated the drugs' benefits for patients from their dangers when abused on the street by young people and others. 

Today, Meier writes, experts – including some who once promoted the drugs – believe that the opioid boom "ranks among medicine's biggest mistakes." Recent studies have tied long-term use of these drugs, particularly at high doses, to addiction, dependence, reduced sexual drive, lethargy and other problems. Based on stories of researchers, patients and others, A World of Hurt highlights how treating pain differently can benefit both pain patients and the public's health.

"The promise that high-powered drugs could provide a cure-all – the key to winning the "War on Pain" – was an empty one," Meier writes.

A WORLD OF HURT: FIXING PAIN MEDICINE'S BIGGEST MISTAKE by Barry Meier , is available for $1.99 at all major digital bookstores, including Amazon and iBookstore.

About the Author: Barry Meier is a veteran reporter for The New York Times who was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize and is a two-time winner of the prestigious George Polk Award. At The Times, his reporting has concentrated on the intersection between business, medicine and the public's health. Over his career, he has exposed the dangers of various drugs and medical devices and was the first journalist to shed a national spotlight on the abuse of OxyContin. He is the author of Pain Killer: A "Wonder" Drug's Trail of Addiction and Death (Rodale, 2003).

About The New York Times

The New York Times Company (NYSE: NYT), a leading global multimedia news and information company with 2012 revenues of $2.0 billion, includes The New York Times, the International Herald Tribune, The Boston Globe,,, and related properties. The Company's core purpose is to enhance society by creating, collecting and distributing high-quality news and information.

About Vook

Founded in 2009, Vook has created an innovative technology platform that allows content holders to create great ebooks, add video, audio and images, publish the ebooks to their own Web page and to the major e-Tailers, and track their sales. Vook provides a turn key solution for content strategy, including editorial, marketing and distribution services and has worked with a range of partners, including Simon & Schuster, The History Channel, Google and Newsweek Daily Beast. For more information, please visit

A World of Hurt is available for $1.99 as a Kindle Single at Amazon, a Quick Read at Apple's iBookstore, a Nook Snap at (coming soon), a Short Read at Kobo (coming soon), and at To read an excerpt, visit For an advance reading copy or to schedule an interview with Barry Meier please contact Danielle Rhoades Ha at, 212-556-8719; or Allison Horton , 626-264-2668,

Media Contact: Allison Horton , Vook, 626-264-2668,

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