Make Pain a Thing of the Past – Surgeon General – Physician Partners of America

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“No way! I’m not an addict!” That’s what many patients offered naloxone by their Physician Partners of America doctors say when offered the fast-acting opioid antidote along with a prescription for pain killers. Despite being legitimately prescribed opioids for chronic pain, these patients feel stigmatized, even insulted, by the idea they could overdose.

This week, U.S. Surgeon General Jerome Adams issued an advisory that encouraged more people to routinely carry naloxone: “We should think of naloxone like an EpiPen or CPR,” he announced April 5. “Unfortunately, over half of the overdoses that are occurring are occurring in homes, so we want everyone to be armed to respond.”

PPOA has written prescriptions for naloxone with every opioid prescription since 2004. Even though the medication can be free or low-cost with insurance, PPOA has discovered many patients refuse prescriptions for the antidote when they pick up their pain medication prescription.

“They feel they don’t need it. As pharmacists, we try our best to stress the importance of having naloxone in the home while on opiate therapy,” said Samantha Dangler, vice president of Operations – Ancillary Division for Physician Partners of America. “With the opioid crisis at an all-time high, it is imperative that when a physician writes a prescription for an opiate and an antidote, that the patient follows through and fills the prescription for the antidote.”

While the company’s pain management providers focus on interventional – that is, non-medication – modalities to treat debilitating chronic pain, some patients come to its practices already on the drug. For those patients, naloxone medications, such as Narcan, Evzio and Naltrexone, are highly recommended until they can be weaned off the opiate.

Emergency rescue workers, police and other agencies have carried the antidote for a while. But many overdoses occur in the home. The risk of accidental overdose, even by compliant patients, is high. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, around 46 people die every day from overdoses involving prescription opioids and more than 40% of all U.S. opioid overdose deaths in 2016 involved a prescription.

Read the Surgeon General’s full announcement.


Joint pain, also called arthralgia, can be a debilitating, frustrating condition. It can develop in any joint in the body, though the knees, hips, and shoulders are the most at risk because of a large amount of stress they handle on a daily basis. Degenerative conditions such as osteoarthritis and sports injuries are some of the most common causes of joint pain. Other causes include:

  • Rheumatoid arthritis
  • Degenerative disc disease
  • Bursitis
  • Gout
  • Lupus

For some people, joint pain goes away on its own over the course of several weeks. Treatments such as over-the-counter medication, stretching, and physical therapy are usually successful at mitigating joint stiffness and pain. However, other people experience chronic joint pain that persists for months or years. They may experience joints that are swollen, tender, stiff, or weak. Many people with chronic osteoarthritis also suffer from reduced range of motion in the joint. For these individuals, joint pain injections may be the right treatment choice.

How  Injections for Joint Pain Work

Joint pain injections offer a more targeted approach to pain that does not respond to more conservative treatments. However, many people with joint pain may not be ready for major surgery such as joint replacement. Most injections can be performed right in your doctor’s office and you can go home after the procedure.

  1. The doctor will use a needle to inject the joint with medication. To ensure accuracy, X-ray guidance is used to get the needle to the precise location of joint pain.
  2. A local anesthetic such as lidocaine is injected, along with a slow-release steroid (usually cortisone).
  3. The local anesthetic will numb the pain for several hours, but the steroid will take three to five days to take effect.
  4. Once the steroid reduces inflammation, pain relief may last for several weeks or months.

Find Injections for Joint Pain in Texas and Florida

“Joint pain” is an extremely broad term, and the condition affects everyone differently. At Physician Partners of America, we believe in listening to what you have to say about your pain and the treatments you’ve tried in the past so that we can thoroughly understand your condition and provide you with a customized treatment plan. No two people are alike, so why should pain relief plans be alike? We offer a range of pain relief therapies for osteoarthritis and sports injuries including injections for joint pain.