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United States Consumes 80% of World's Opioid Supply

March 29, 2017 Kiro Coffee

Americans consume approximately 99% of one specific opioid, called hydrocodone under the brand name Vicodin. Vicodin is a powerful narcotic painkiller. During the 1980's and early 1990's there was a large crusade by physicians to fight non-cancerous pain syndromes. Vicodin was released on the the drug market in 1978 as a schedule III drug which has a lower potential for abuse than schedule II and schedule I drugs. It wasn't until late 2014 until Vicodin was labeled as a schedule II drug after thousands of overdose deaths attributed to properly prescribed opioids and the CDC declaring a state of crisis. 

In 1996 Purdue Pharma released one of the hottest selling brand name drugs in history, Oxycontin. It followed six people who suffered from chronic pain and were treated with OxyContin. Two years later, Purdue Pharma released a video titled "I Got My Life Back." The video showcased a medical doctor that recommended long term use of Oxycontin and stated that the addiction rates were well below 1% of patients on the medication. The company suppled physician waiting rooms with 15,000 copies of the video for patients as an educational tool. You can see a clip of the video here:

 

Unfortunately, Purdue Pharma grossly underestimated the detrimental effects of their narcotic and were required to pay out one of the largest pharmaceutical settlements in history. In May 2007, the company pleaded guilty to misleading the public about Oxycontin's risk of addiction, and agreed to pay $600 million. Eight years later in 2015, Kentucky sued Purdue Pharma for $24 million due to widespread Oxycontin abuse in Appalachia. 

Fifteen years after the Purdue Pharma promotional video, at least 2 of the 6 patients in the video suffered from opioid addiction. Their story can be seen here:

 

Kiro Coffee is on a mission to impact those suffering from opioid addiction by allowing them access to Chiropractic care. Read more about our mission here.



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