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If news is what happens to editors, I suppose that scholarship is what happens to professors. At least, that was the case for me.

As a researcher at the Johns Hopkins Berman Institute of Bioethics, I didn’t start thinking about America’s problems with pain and drugs through dispassionate research. I got there thanks to a motorcycle accident, after which I was given lots of prescription opioids and then left to my own devices.

The result was that I formed a profound dependence on the drug, and then went through the agony of withdrawal as I tried — with no help from my doctors — to get off the meds.

That experience gave me a new perspective on the risks and benefits of prescription opioids, as well as a deep desire to help the millions of Americans who are suffering from addiction (and to prevent some of the tens of thousands of overdose deaths each year).

…continue reading ‘To Fight Opioid Epidemic, Treat Drug Use With Compassion, Not Judgment’

Thumb image via USA Today – David Maialetti/The Philadelphia Inquirer via AP

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