Believe it or not, there is a new way for people to get their hands on opioid drugs. It isn’t in a way that you would expect. No, they’re not stealing them out of friends cabinets. Nor are they snatching them on the streets for money.
Instead, they are using the pet health industry. Many animals suffer from anxiety and depression. These days there are lots of ways to treat that. Treatment can include prescription drugs. Even opioid drugs that humans use for themselves.
Veterinarians are definitely willing to prescribe for pets to help keep them from feeling pain. The problem is they are overprescribing. There are concerns that people will use these prescriptions for their own addiction. Not the reason that they were prescribed.
Apparently at the University of Pennsylvania’s School of Veterinary Medicine opioid prescriptions rose 41 percent from 2007 to 2017. The normal number of visits for the whole year only increased by 13 percent though.
That is a suspicious comparison. That is suspicious because you think they would match up because it is an increased number of visits. Instead, that isn’t the case. Veterinarians are just prescribing them more and people are asking.
The opioid epidemic that we have is in part because of a change in philosophy. This means the risks of opioid addiction were not fully evaluated. Instead of pain being a symptom was treated more often.
Trends in veterinary medicine tend to follow trends in human medicine. That is because we are all part of the same community. It isn’t surprising at all.
Vets have begun keeping a closer watch on what they prescribe. Now that is has been called out into the open and studies have been done, everyone is surprised at the results. They didn’t realize how often they were overprescribing.