James Liu11/21/11SCPP 30401
Prior to my class I spent my summer volunteering and working in the emergencyroom at my local hospital. From this experience I saw both good and bad in howAmerican health organizations are run. One incident in particular dealing with opoidabuse and addiction peaked my interest. During my time in the Medical Skills Counselingclass Professor Vachon introduced new concepts about the important of patient doctor interactions and trust, empathy, and connections that are built. I reflected back on my pastexperience in the emergency room and I was conflicted between dealing with opoid patient abuse and patient trust and interaction. For my final paper I wanted to further explore the opoid abuse and how it is being handled in our modern medical system. Inone part I explore the definitions of abuse and addiction and how these can be identified.Then I highlight methods of appropriate treatment and things to keep in mind whenundergoing treatment. And finally I address my own perspectives and how both my personal and academic experiences tie into the issue.
Opioid Abuse and Addiction in the Emergency Room
Opioids are psychoactive chemicals that long have been used for their therapeutic benefits. Biologically they target the opioid receptors in the central and peripheralnervous system providing both a psychological and analgesic effect on the body. Theseanalgesic effects include decreased perception and increased tolerance to pain. Therefore,in modern medicine opioids are commonly known as painkillers. They are prescribed inclinical settings for acute and chronic pain under more familiar names like morphine,methadone, oxycodone, and codeine (McCaffrey et al.)However, opioids also provide psychological side effects along with their analgesic properties. These side effects produce a change in mood, decreased anxiety,drowsiness, and a sense of tranquility. Likewise, many individuals note that along withthese effects they have a, “feeling of detachment from the responsibilities of the world