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Business and patient groups waged a costly lobbying campaign against tighter prescribing regulations for hydrocodone products for many years, according to The New York Times. Last week, the Food and Drug Administration recommended tighter restrictions for products containing hydrocodone and other painkillers such as acetaminophen or aspirin.

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The Food and Drug Administration has recommended tighter restrictions for products containing hydrocodone and other painkillers such as acetaminophen or aspirin. These combination products include Vicodin and Lortab.

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A new study suggests patients taking buprenorphine to treat their opioid addiction may benefit from tapering off the medication over four weeks instead of a shorter period. The longer detoxification is effective when it is followed by treatment with naltrexone, a drug that blocks opioid strength, the researchers found.

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Addiction treatment experts urged New Jersey legislators last week to take steps to curb opioid abuse, including expanding what doctors are required to learn about addiction, and making participation in the state’s prescription drug monitoring program mandatory.

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Legislators in Ohio, which has experienced a surge in opioid overdose deaths, are calling for stricter standards for prescribing opioids for pain, The Columbus Dispatch reports.

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The number of babies born dependent on drugs their mothers took during pregnancy is predicted to exceed 800 in Tennessee this year, more than even before, according to a new report.

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A new report finds many states do not have effective strategies in place to fight prescription drug abuse, CNN reports. The report found 28 states and Washington, D.C. scored six or less out of 10 possible indicators of promising strategies.

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The death rate from opiate overdoses among Veterans Affairs patients is almost double the national average, according to a report by the Center for Investigative Reporting. Prescriptions for hydrocodone, oxycodone, methadone and morphine have jumped 270 percent in the past 12 years among VA patients, the report found.

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A new study suggests people undergoing weight-loss surgery who were chronic users of opioid painkillers before the procedure increase their drug intake afterwards. The findings surprised the researchers, who said they thought the dramatic weight loss that generally follows the surgery would alleviate patients’ pain.

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A judge in Ohio recently ordered an 18-year-old addicted to heroin, who was convicted of stealing, to undergo a series of injections of the opioid dependence medication Vivitrol. The move has sparked debate about whether this approach should be used more widely, and who would pay for it, according to USA Today.

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