When Opioid Treatment for Depression & Pain Was Still Accepted
Most people who have been diagnosed with chronic depression and anxiety have probably been prescribed modern anti-depression and anxiety medications such as Prozac, Celexa, Zoloft, Paxil and other SSRI related medications which seem to be the favorite choice of every modern doctor of the 21st century.
Unfortunately these new anti-anxiety and depression medications do not come without side effects and only a small percentage of its users reports that these anxiety medications do indeed balance their moods to the point where they can say they truly feel comfortable over longer periods of time.
One of the most common experienced side-effect of SSRI’s is decreased sexual appetite which in turn is often treated with other commercial medications such as Viagra, Uprima or Cialis. It is also known that people who suffer chronic depression are more sensitive to pain and the other way around people who suffer severe chronic pain are likely to become depressed due to disturbed chemical balances in the brain.
In the time of the ancient Greeks opium was the most common remedy to treat feelings of melancholy, anxiety and both physical and emotional pain. Opium was also a common medicine in the Chinese culture which has a very long history of advanced medical knowledge alike many other cultures that have been using opium for many years. Opium is very cheap to produce, extremely easy to make and has many useful properties which is the reason that this medication has been utilized by ancient cultures even several 1000’s of years before Christ.
Unfortunately somewhere after the year 1900 authorities decided that opioids were not suitable to help people deal with extreme traumatic emotional pains, severe depression and anxiety. Even if a person was unable to regain their sanity it was better to put them into an institution aggravating their conditions instead of providing an effective medicine to ease their suffering.
In most countries after 1920 most opioids could only be obtained with prescriptions for use in hospitals and for recovery from physical pain. In 1897 Heroin (a product made from opium) was first synthesized by Adolph von Bayer and his company (Yes, this is the same guy who invented Bayer Aspirin that same year). At this time Heroin was still legal in the USA and it was used as a cough suppressant in syrups, tablets and as powder soluble in water. Nowadays some doctors prescribe cough syrup containing Hydrocodone sold under the name Tussionex because opioids are wonderful cough suppressants and you will find syrups with Codeine (another opium product) available over the counter in many countries outside the USA.
Heroin (Diamorphine) was also used in an attempt to help morphine addicts overcome their addiction but unfortunately it turned out that Heroin was much more addictive than Morphine Sulfate which eventually resulted in a ban on Heroin and a much stricter policy regarding opioids. It seems like Heroin was the drop which made all opium products look bad. Because Heroin and Morphine are much more addictive than opium itself they should definitely be handled with greater care.
Hydrocodone Bitrate is another product made from Opium and is found in many commercial medications such as Lortab, Vicodin, Lorcet and many others. Studies show this medication is much less addictive and has proven to be very effective against chronic depression, anxiety and severe psychological trauma. In the USA Hydrocodone currently is a Class II controlled substance but not available in its pure form. In the USA it is always mixed with substances such as Acetaminophen (Tylenol) which therefore makes it a class III controlled substance for some reason.
I am still surprised why Hydrocodone is not used in patients with severe chronic depression and anxiety or in people that are so depressed that they attempt to commit suicide. Tests show that moderate use of Hydrocodone in depressed and suicidal patients is much more effective then the traditional medications currently promoted for depression. Although Hydrocodone has addictive properties and should only be taken under close supervision it could help improve the quality of live of many people. Especially for in-patient treatment this should be considered. For some reason it is accepted to take pain medication such as Hydrocodone if you experience tooth ache but if the pain is caused by chronic psychological traumas this is unacceptable according to current law.
Alcoholics have reported to quiet drinking when treated with Hydrocodone and have been able to keep a job and function normally in our society. Suicidal patients who had given up all hope were able to enjoy live again. Severely depressed and anxiety patients were able to move on with their lives… Should we really support this war on drugs and now also try to take these medications away from chronic pain patients?
Even though complaints from chronic pain patients are easier to diagnose and document we now have created a situation where doctors are under-prescribing out of fear, especially if their patient are in their last stages of life because the docs can be charged with murder if autopsies shows high traces of pain medication. I pray this madness comes to an end and I sincerely hope none of you will ever be dying in extreme pain in a hospital, nursing home or maybe at your own house while the doctor is afraid to give you that prescription or injection during your last moments. Yes, definitely keep this medication away from kids but do make it available to those who can benefit from it!
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