Short Shorts November 2015

I Get Letters . . .

This month I received the following email from a subscriber relating to recent government restrictions on availability of prescription pain medications:

My friend is in the midst of a breast reconstruction that has run into a lot of problems.  She lives in Oregon at the moment, but all her doctors are here in California.  Something is causing her horrendous pain in one of the breasts, an indication that the port has moved and she may have to come in for emergency surgery.  Here’s the problem: she has no more pain medication, and because of these new restrictions she can’t have a prescription mailed, even if she can get the doctor to write a prescription to cover her until she gets back to California.

 This is one of the reasons for the illegal drug market.  People with legitimate need for a drug that the DEA has targeted, are out of luck, so patients start looking for other resources.  I told her to go to an Urgent Care facility in Portland and TELL them to call her oncologist.  They could then write the prescription, maybe without a problem.

 As someone who recently left the pharmaceutical profession, you really get what this is all about.  I think you’ve written some about it…?  But could you please bring the issue back?  I bet the number of people who are being penalized because of this new action is far bigger than the number of people who take the drug recreationally.  I have a friend who manages a care facility for the elderly who says doctors don’t want to come once a month just to write a prescription. How many suffering, bed-ridden patients are in pain, because of this policy?

My reply:

When I saw this debacle coming, I advised folks with a legitimate need for Vicodin or Norco to work with their physicians to acquire a backup supply. That’s still my advice, although I know how difficult it now is. But your doctor should still be able to figure out how to keep you pain free without you living strictly from refill to refill. You shouldn’t have to worry about not having enough medication to get you through the month.

In the meantime, street pain meds seem readily available. They may be expensive, adulterated and even lethal, but they are they available. A disgusting situation. Our government should work as diligently to keep illegal drugs off the streets and out of our country as it works to keep legitimate pain meds from patients.

Medical Conditions in Need of New Medications

According to a recent article in the online Pharmacy Times, Americans want more medications to treat obesity, depression, and anxiety among other conditions.

Obesity, which affects more than one-third of Americans, ranked highest among US physicians who were asked which conditions they wished had more pharmacological remedies.

It is suggested that pharmacists can monitor patient medication profiles to find out which drugs could be causing weight gain.

Let’s think about this: Drugs currently consumed by many patients cause weight gain, so let’s “discover” another drug that will combat the weight gain caused by the drugs that cause weight gain. Wouldn’t it make more sense to focus on healthy eating?

As for depression, it is a huge issue but instead of more expensive, worthless, “pharmacological remedies” loaded with troubling side effects, (such as weight gain) perhaps a natural approach would be helpful.

Anyone dealing with depression can sign up for an excellent online course, “Natural Therapies for Depression and Anxiety” on for only $19,  The course is presented by friend and fellow pharmacist Ross Pelton, Ph.D. who explains in easy to understand terms how diet can help alleviate depression.

Also, visit Dr. Pelton’s  website and watch how he prepares his “Buzz Salad”. It’s nutritious, delicious, and a great time saver for busy people. Not only that, it helps lose weight.

Why Bodybuilding At Age 93 Is A Great Idea

This month I am featuring a video  found on and it’s a blockbuster must-watch for retirees who are sedentary and need some motivation to get moving. The speaker is a 93 year old body builder and I love what he has to say, particularly about the importance of WORK — regardless of age. Watch it here


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