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Nov-15-2009 12:29printcomments

Purdue Funded Doctors Suggest Increased Pain Meds for Babies

Report promoting wider use of pain medications specifically targeting kids is funded by the makers of Oxycontin.

Doctors funded by Purdue and other huge pharmaceutical companies, issued a report suggesting small children need more pain medications.

(MYRTLE BEACH, S.C.) - A meeting held by "a family foundation dedicated to reducing human suffering caused by pain......" was held in Washington, DC this past June 2009 -- Below is the link to the recommendations of this meeting. The report is a fast read -- only about ten actual pages, and the link contains background information I find interesting -- for want of a better word. Below that, is my problem with the report.

Actually "problem" is not the correct word -- the words "criminal marketing" as well as "a vested interest in continued financial reward" both come to mind though. (see: A Call to Revolutionize Chronic Pain Care in America)

Marianne Skolek

One of the Committee Co-Chairs of this Mayday Fund is Russell Portenoy, MD and past president of the American Pain Foundation who is presently on the Board of the Foundation. The American Pain Foundation is not only funded by the convicted criminals, Purdue Pharma but also other pharmaceutical companies.

Portenoy has been a "consultant" for dozens of pharmaceutical companies -- including the manufacturer of OxyContin -- Purdue Pharma. He has served on the Speakers Bureau for Purdue Pharma as well as receiving funding from them. He has a "financial/professional relationship" with several pharmaceutical companies -- including Purdue Pharma and has received grants from Purdue Pharma to his Department of Pain Medicine and Palliative Care at Beth Israel Medical Center.

Kathleen M. Foley, MD served as a Committee Member on the Mayday Fund Report. Foley has been quoted as saying "I'm honored to have an endowed chair established in my name at the Center for Practical Bioethics - an organization that shares my commitment to improving access to pain care and enhancing pain policy in the United States."

"With this endowed chair, the Center has elevated its level of dedication still higher to relieve pain and suffering at all stages of life."

The Center is currently identifying potential candidates for the Kathleen M.Foley Chair for Pain and Palliative Care, which will be funded by a $3 million endowment.

Purdue Pharma has provided a lead gift of $1.5 million, and efforts are under way to raise the balance of the endowment. Purdue has been quoted by its CEO, John Stewart as saying "Purdue is pleased and proud to play a part in establishing such an important position in the pain community. This endowment embodies our longstanding commitment to ensuring proper pain management and access to care for the millions of Americans suffering from chronic, debilitating pain."

In the Conclusion of the Mayday Fund Report, it reads "Reducing the burden of uncontrolled chronic pain is a societal necessity, a medical challenge and an economic requirement.

Chronic pain, if not recognized and treated as a chronic illness, takes an enormous personal toll on millions of patients and their families, and leads to increased health care costs. Chronic pain can also compromise the productivity of the U.S. workforce."

Maybe Portenoy and Foley and the other Committee Members contributing to this report would like to address the epidemic in this country of OxyContin deaths and addictions which has taken "an enormous personal toll on millions of patients and their families."

Do you want to address the staggering health care costs of rehabilitation in drug facilities throughout the U.S. and Canada because your esteemed Purdue Pharma marketed OxyContin as less likely to be addictive or abused?

The report also addresses the untreated pain that puts children at risk of developing chronic pain or anxiety later in life and cites most children receiving 24 immunizations before their second birthday. (That equates to an immunization a month -- does anyone else think this lacks credibility?)

"Such pain, although brief can be very intense and can lead to long-lasting anxiety" And what are these Mayday Fund contributors suggesting we give our toddlers for immunization pain? OxyContin? May I suggest their next report deal with the attributes of Tylenol in treating toddlers for immunization pain as it has been very effective for generations.

Also, using Tylenol wouldn't have the need for Portenoy and Foley to participate in another Mayday Fund Report entitled --- "How did my two year toddler become a drug addict?"

Since I don't know how the contributors to this report can sleep at night, may I suggest a sleeping pill? Reporter Marianne Skolek, is an Activist for Victims of OxyContin throughout the United States and Canada. In July 2007, she testified against Purdue Pharma in Federal Court in Virginia at the sentencing of their three CEO's who pled guilty to charges of marketing OxyContin as less likely to be addictive or abused to physicians and patients. She also testified against Purdue Pharma at a Judiciary Hearing of the U.S. Senate in July 2007. Marianne works with government agencies and private attorneys in having a voice for her daughter Jill, who died in 2002 after being prescribed OxyContin, as well as the voice for scores of victims of OxyContin. She has been involved in her work for the past 7-1/2 years and is currently working on a book that exposes Purdue Pharma for their continued criminal marketing of OxyContin.

Marianne is a nurse having graduated in 1991 as president of her graduating class. She also has a Paralegal certification. Marianne served on a Community Service Board for the Courier News, a Gannet newspaper in NJ writing articles predominantly regarding AIDS patients and their emotional issues. She was awarded a Community Service Award in 1993 by the Hunterdon County, NJ HIV/AIDS Task Force in recognition of and appreciation for the donated time, energy and love in facilitating a Support Group for persons with HIV/AIDS.
You can send Marianne an email at:

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Winder November 16, 2009 11:09 am (Pacific time)

I'm pretty sure baby aspirin works fine for this type of acute pain in small children. Surely they are not promoting Oxycontin for this? I'm taking it now, (Oxycontin) and it's not helping me at all. Unless I stop taking it---then my pain it's actually made my pain worse; horrible stuff. I asked my doctor to wean me off of it, so he's more than tripled my Lyrica dosage along with Tramadol, just to bring me down from 40mg thrice daily to 20mg 2 or 3 times daily. Still no pain relief. What a sham...Can't use the safe green alternative 'cause I live in "Dubya's" state. Thanks again Marianne, for another fine article; can't wait to read your book. :-}

Kim Spencer November 16, 2009 8:41 am (Pacific time)

Actually, Tylenol stops the body from making glutathione, the component in the cell responsible for detox. Kids need plenty of detox ablility when receiving 5-9 diseases in their shots as babies. Tylenol is NOT a good choice either. I vote no pain killers for the vaccines. Why cover up a potential side effect when you should know about it?

Marianne Skolek November 16, 2009 5:20 am (Pacific time)

Stephen -- I will be getting in touch with Dr. Tenpenny. Remember, you are not alone. Best, Marianne

Mike H. November 15, 2009 11:00 pm (Pacific time)

People should have the choice. If they want to use OxyContin as their painkiller, who is anyone to tell them they can't? Do they harm other when on the drug? No. Of course, everyone should be aware of what they are getting into when they decide to make OxyContin their pain med.

Detoxer November 15, 2009 7:49 pm (Pacific time)

Marianne is right on again. OxyContin--legal heroin, should not be on the market. Go to and read the comments. Steve

stephen November 15, 2009 7:23 pm (Pacific time)

Dr Tenpenny is another great source for information. Google her name. And again, thanks to salem-news and the author of this story. I dont feel so alone. :-) Marianne, dont forget to check into Dr. Tenpenny. You will find much in common.

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