This Pain Medication Could Kill You

On September 14, Cephalon Inc. urged U.S. doctors to take special precautions in selecting patients and prescribing the correct dosage of the cancer drug Fentora.

The letter, which was issued in collaboration with the FDA, was in response to the recent deaths of several patients receiving the drug.

Fentora (fentanyl buccal) is a highly potent, opioid pain medication, indicated for use in cancer patients already receiving opioid treatment but who have become tolerant to it. However, doctors are also prescribing Fentora “off-label” for headache and back pain.

According to the FDA, Fentora should also not be used as a substitute for Actiq – another fentanyl product used to treat breakthrough cancer pain – as it may result in a fatal overdose.

Science Daily September 26, 2007

Science Daily September 14, 2007

Dr. Mercola's Comments:

Many cancer patients experience so-called “breakthrough” pain – intense pain that comes on suddenly, and lasts from minutes to an hour or so. This pain essentially “breaks through” the conventional pain medication. Some cancer sufferers can have several of these episodes per day…

Unfortunately, the conventional therapies for cancer can be quite devastating, as well as not actually prolonging your survival, adding insult to injury.

Fentora is a Schedule II opioid, meaning its bedmates include:

  • Morphine
  • Hydromorphine
  • Oxymorphine
  • Methadone  

These heavy-duty pain killers carry the highest potential for abuse, and risk of respiratory depression that can lead to death. Aside from that, other common side effects of these opioids include: 

  • Vomiting
  • Cognitive impairment
  • Constipation
  • Breathing problems 

And, in the case of some medications -- such as Fentora -- the main side effect is death. Usually, your doctor will simply give you more drugs to counteract these side effects (they have yet to be able to counteract death, but they’re working on it, I’m sure), but oftentimes you’ll still be in considerable pain. 

Is there any viable alternative that will NOT do more harm than good? 

I believe there is.  

A classic example of the power of emotions in pain is the work of Dr. John Sarno, a physician who focuses on treating patients with severe recalcitrant low back pain. So severe they went for surgery. But the patients he saw not only had surgery, they failed the surgery. So his entire population was the worst of the worst low back pain patients. 

And in this very difficult group, he was getting over 80% improvements by only addressing the emotional element of the pain. 

The tool that has worked the best in my experience is energy psychology, which is quite simply the most amazing tool I have ever seen to improve -- if not eliminate -- many types of pain.  This tool has produced more miracles that I have witnessed than any other approach, and many of them have occurred after very brief interventions. 

There are many types of energy psychology techniques but the one used the most is The Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT), which is currently being used by more than 15,000 psychologists. 

The Emotional Freedom Technique has also been used, successfully, in the treatment of breakthrough cancer pain. Some of the examples and testimonials are listed in related articles below.

EFT is not only a drug-free approach for pain management of all kinds (including cancer), but it can also treat the side effects associated with conventional drugs. It borrows from the principles of acupuncture in that it helps you balance our your subtle energy system, and it helps resolve underlying, often subconscious, negative emotions that may be exacerbating your physical pain.

By stimulating (tapping) well-established acupuncture points with your fingertips, you re-balance your energy system, which tends to dissipate pain. Getting involved in your own pain management program can be an essential part of your healing, and EFT can be a vital, drug-free component of your recuperation.

Remember this: drugs – ALL drugs – come with serious risks. If you’re a subscriber to my newsletter, you couldn’t have missed the fact that some researchers are finally fessing up the serious health risks inherent with even the most common over-the-counter medications – such as Ibuprofen, and those cough syrups that you give to your children; none of them are truly safe.

To imagine any doctor prescribing a drug like Fentora – an opiate-of-last-resort – for common ailments like back pain or headaches is truly shocking. But it happens… And it’s all the more reason for you to take control of your own health!  Don’t just hand over this most vital responsibility to someone else without question.

So, if you are searching for a solution for your pain, I would encourage you to learn more about EFT.   

However, if it is severe you will not want to treat yourself, but seek a highly trained EFT expert. Gary Craig has published a list of EFT therapists throughout the United States and the world.

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