You should be aware that death from medications used to treat chronic pain is of epidemic proportions in our society. The accidental death of Prince has made this very clear.
Patients in South Carolina are not immune from this problem and physicians in the state are being forced to deal with this issue. They are required to take and pass a course on prescribing pain medications and recognizing their abuse. Serious attempts are being made to eliminate opium derivates for patients. New research suggests that pain medications, in some cases, make the pain syndrome worse.
The prescribed pain medication epidemic appears to be a major problem in the white community because these medications are prescribed more frequently to white patients, but black people also become addicted.
The paradox is several, African American, iconic music celebrities have overdosed, accidentally, from pain medications for chronic conditions and Prince is the latest victim.
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Thaddeus J. Bell, MD
I am Dr. Thaddeus John Bell, closing the gap in health disparities for African Americans and the underserved.
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