No Pain, No Gain



I first heard this motto in the early ’80s when Jane Fonda workout videos were all the rage. We mostly think exercise or sports when it comes to this adage.

Interestingly, Wall Street and certain pharmaceutical agents have twisted this concept to make huge profits on an unusually powerful and addictive painkiller called Subsys. Writing in The New York Times,Business Day, reporter Katie Thomas exposes how this new drug is making millions (off pain) for its producers and promoters.

By way of some background, Subsys is a form of Fentanyl that is sprayed under the tongue for immediate relief. Its short-term effectiveness is without question, along with its high risk of dependency and respiratory distress. In 2012, the FDA approved it for cancer patients who are already on opioid painkillers around the clock. Oncologists and specially-trained pain doctors were expected to be the primary prescribers.


However, according to The New York Times, only 1% of prescriptions for the product are written by cancer specialists. Evidently, the range of physicians prescribing the product include general practice physicians, neurologists, dentists and podiatrists.


Dr. Lewis Nelson, a medical toxicologist at NYU School of Medicine, opines how this narcotic might be appropriate for terminally ill cancer patients, and that patients waiting to die should die in comfort and dignity. He goes on to say, “It’s very different than if you’re attempting to have a functional life, because these drugs are relatively incompatible with having a functional life.”


We see the pain, we see this drug, and we see very little gain for typical comp patients.

Call us. Functional living is the gain.

William Faris, JD
Chief Executive Officer

Posted in Medical Cost Containment, OMCA