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chronic pain

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Dr. Andrew Kolodny, the chief medical officer for the Phoenix House discusses evidence-based addiction treatment and the risk of addiction among patients treated with opioids.

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Dr. Andrew Kolodny is the Chief Medical Officer and Senior Vice President at Phoenix House Foundation in New York. He’s also a go-to source for journalists looking for perspective on the nation’s prescription drug abuse problem.

Picture of William Heisel

A seemingly comprehensive article used as the basis for big claims about the number of people in chronic pain is rooted in data more than a decade old. Why?

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An influential claim that a quarter of Americans suffer from chronic pain doesn't seem to have been scrutinized by peer scientists. Why not?

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Guest blogger Dr. Steven Passik says the idea of one pain therapy working for most people is simply absurd. So why does our healthcare system seem to demand it?

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Why do some chronic pain sufferers seek treatment while others don't — and what does that have to do with how many Americans live with chronic pain?

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When I started writing about questionable pain statistics, a weightlifting friend asked: “What is chronic pain defined as?” That depends on whom you ask.

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At the center of one of the great medical controversies of our time, the mishmash around pain medication and addiction to prescription drugs has caused alarm in law enforcement and the public.  But the realities of patients who have chronic pain problems, chronic addiction problems, or both, are not

Picture of William Heisel

Those who cite a study from Scotland to estimate that up to 150 million Americans suffer from chronic pain and yet very few are treated for it, seem to be missing this statement in it: "Prevalence of chronic pain also varies widely across different geographical locations."

Picture of William Heisel

Research from a commonly cited study in Scotland never says there are 150 million people in pain. They never even use the word “million." So why are people citing this paper as evidence that 75 million to 150 million people are in pain?



“Racism in medicine is a national emergency.” That’s how journalist Nicholas St. Fleur characterized the crisis facing American health care this spring, as his team at STAT embarked on “Color Code,” an eight-episode series exploring medical mistrust in communities of color across the country. In this webinar, we’ll take inspiration from their work to discuss strategies and examples for telling stories about inequities, disparities and racism in health care systems. Sign-up here!

The USC Center for Health Journalism at the Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism is seeking two Engagement Editors to serve as thought leaders in one of the most innovative and rewarding arenas in journalism today – “engaged reporting” that puts the community at the center of the reporting process. Learn more about the positions and apply to join our team.


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