1/14/13- America’s Military and Highly Addictive Pain Killers
America’s military is facing a new opponent today: highly addictive painkillers that can cause suicidal tendencies, all while trying to cope with chronic pain in the midst of a high stress environment.
Secretary of Defense, Leon Panetta, says this all-time high suicide rate among active and retired military personnel is an epidemic.
Some link many of those suicide cases to highly addictive medications like opioids that have been prescribed to the soldiers to treat chronic pain or other conditions.
Men’s Journal reports Seroqel is being given to soldiers in record numbers to help combat posttraumatic stress disorder and sometimes sleep disorders after they return home from war.
Army doctor Major Jeffrey Tiede, is part of a team trying to find a way to reduce any possible abuse of opiods and other medications.
Doctor Tiede says, “With such rampant use in the warrior population, it is reasonable to envision a percentage of these rangers—who are our front-line guys—who rely on chronic opioid therapy to stay in the fight while deferring more time-consuming rehabilitative treatment.”
Arizona Pain Specialists, Dr. Tory McJunkin says these drugs can leave lasting effects on those who’ve already sacrificed so much to defend our country.
The Men’s Journal article breaks it down even further with a look at the numbers. That report shows America’s current military is now the most medicated group in its history with 20-percent taking medicines military officials consider “high-risk.”