Some of those deaths are right here in Nebraska.
Dr. Ana Fuentevilla with the United Health Group says opioids do serve a purpose in pain management after surgery. However, that use can quickly lead to an addiction. She says every patient should have a discussion with their physician and ask important questions.
Dr. Fuentevilla says, “A patient could ask their doctor for the lowest dose possible for safety and the fewest days possible. We do know is that after three days the risk of addiction from an opioid can be increased.”
About 70-percent of misused opioid prescriptions were obtained, stolen or purchased from a friend or relative. Every 13 minutes someone in the U.S. dies from a opioid overdose and an estimated two million Americans have a substance use disorder with painkillers.
This should serve as a reminder to get unused and unwanted prescriptions and over-the-counter drugs out of your home. Saturday is National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day and there are many participating agencies across the state of Nebraska.