Illicit Opioids: The Harms Associated With Conflation of Data – January 17, 2017 – By Stephen Ziegler, PhD, Guest Columnist
The research letter, like many articles authored by those who are rightly concerned about addiction and overdose, begins by asserting that an association exists between increases in opioid prescribing and “large increases in addiction and overdose deaths in the United States.”
However, there are several problems with such a statement. First, association is not causation.
The example given is that fires (symptoms) are associated with fire engines (treatments), yet fire engines don’t cause the fires. As with both pain and addiction, eliminating treatment options, like opioids, does nothing to eliminate the symptoms (pain or addiction).
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