U-M experts available to discuss FDA ruling on narcotic painkillers

November 4, 2013

ANN ARBOR—The Food and Drug Administration recently tightened rules regarding the prescription of narcotic painkillers, or opioids, that could help curb their misuse for nonmedical purposes.

University of Michigan researchers can discuss ramifications of the new rules. They include:

Carol Boyd, the Deborah J. Oakley Collegiate Professor in the School of Nursing and Women’s Studies and research scientist at the U-M Substance Abuse Research Center. Her current NIH-funded research focuses on the relationship of gender to drug seeking and selling, including the misuse and abuse of narcotics, sedatives and stimulants. She also studies gender differences in prescription drug use and abuse among secondary and college students. Contact: (734) 764-9537 or caroboyd@med.umich.edu

Rebecca Cunningham, M.D., director of the U-M Injury Center and an emergency physician. She can address the issue of emergency room doctors and other providers who make daily decisions about prescribing these medications, and evaluating a patient’s risk of abuse or diversion of these drugs. She recently found that 10 percent of older teens who came to the U-M ER in a one-year period admitted to having misused narcotic painkillers or sedatives—paving the way for using the ER as a potential screening location for identifying prescription drug abuse (read more about the study at http://umhealth.me/rxteen). Contact: (734) 615-3704 or stroh@umich.edu

Sean McCabe, a research associate professor at the Institute for Research on Women and Gender, and Substance Abuse Research Center. He is an internationally recognized scholar in the areas of web-based data collection, prescription drug misuse, gender, sexual orientation and epidemiology of substance abuse. His recent study on high school seniors who misused prescription pain medications found that they risked abusing other controlled substances as young adults (read more about the study at http://bit.ly/1cHI6XV). Contact: (734) 615-8840 or plius@umich.edu