LOS ANGELES, CA - The investigation into the death of music legend Prince continues, shining a new spotlight on opioids, specifically, prescription drugs like Oxycontin.
Oxy, as it`s commonly known, is highly addictive. Doctors seem to know why. They induce euphoria and users report feeling warm, drowsy and content.
Purdue Pharma, the makers of Oxycontin, introduced the drug two decades ago with a bold marketing claim: one dose relieves pain for 12 hours. It quickly became America`s best-selling pain-reliever to the tune of $31-billion in revenue.
But here`s the problem, Oxy doesn`t last 12 hours.
Your body creates natural Opioids when you get hurt. But if you make a habit of using pain killers, your body stops producing its own and relies too heavily on the drugs. Many patients report serious withdrawal symptoms as Oxy wears off, leading doctors to prescribe stronger doses, leading to addiction and, yes, overdoses.
According to Doctor Mike Evans, Opioid prescriptions have gone up by more than 600% between 2002 and 2010. And according to the center for disease control, more people are addicted to prescription Opioids than Heroin and Cocaine, combined!
Now that`s what you call a real tough pill to swallow!