Bangor Daily News interviews Ed Bilsky on Maine's high rate of opiate prescriptions

July 04, 2014

Edward Bilsky
Edward Bilsky

Edward Bilsky, Ph.D., vice president for research and scholarship and co-director of the Center for Excellence in the Neurosciences, was interviewed at length for a July 3rd story in the Bangor Daily News about a new federal report that found Maine in 2012 had the highest rate in the nation for prescriptions of long-acting or extended-release opioid pain relievers.

In a dicussion of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report, Bilsky told the Daily News that medical studies support the effectiveness of opioids for treating acute pain, such as after surgery or an injury, but that many health care providers jumped to the conclusion that the drugs work equally well for chronic pain over many months or years. That has led to an overreliance on opioids and an epidemic of misuse.

“There’s really no evidence in the medical literature to support the long-term efficacy, the effectiveness, of these drugs and their safety,” Bilsky said. Read the entire story.