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Video: Groundbreaking Toronto program helps post-op patients get off opioids

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A groundbreaking pain-management program at Toronto General Hospital is helping post-op patients get off opioids. Reporter Cynthia Mulligan talks to a man who used techniques learned there to stop using hydromorphone.

Canada is in an opioid crisis with hundreds dying from the highly addictive drugs and few options for patients to get off them until now a study released today finds a new program here at toronto general hospital which is the first of its kind in the world is having remarkable success teaching the brain to deal with pain pain is an all-encompassing sensation that

Takes over a person’s ability to function normally and how long have you been living with that pain i lived with that pain for thirteen years 24/7 paul ross went on hydromorphone injections for 12 years to deal with his severe pain it’s a powerful opioid that he found he couldn’t live without but the side effects were destroying his life you were left in a fuzz

Your life is a fuzz it completely took over my life after five years of trying unsuccessfully to get off the addictive opioid he finally did in one day cold turkey this is how he did it paul was taught mindfulness techniques in a pain management program at toronto general hospital that combines a doctors care with a psychological approach including meditation

Training relaxation and deep breathing paul’s pain is still there but the program taught his brain how to deal with it you’re able to just let it be part of you exactly before it was me now it’s part of me and he’s not the only patient able to get off the opioids a two-year study just released today found 65 percent of patients who went through the combined program

After surgery were discharged opioid free compared to 41 percent that didn’t it sounds simple but is this revolutionary i think it’s a big change in a really important one there rather than just relying on the prescription pad that we’re able to add other tools it’s such an important thing right now when we’re more and more worried about how opioids are affecting

People canada has the second highest use of opium in the world with hundreds dying from overdoses despite dire warnings there is a crisis a recent study found opioid prescriptions continue to rise in ontario this program could be a solution to helping patients get off the addictive drugs and if we think that our 700 deaths are a big number that’s a drop in the

Bucket if we continue to see patients being abandoned out there so we’re hopeful that these are the road maps that can start to help physicians head down the road of safely doing this paul ross says this new program has truly saved his life and made a massive difference in his quality of life and the hope that this new program at toronto general hospital is that

Now will become the blueprint for pain management at other hospitals across the country certainly more resources are needed to help those who are in pain in ontario there is only one doctor for 50 thousand patients who are suffering

Transcribed from video
Video: Groundbreaking Toronto program helps post-op patients get off opioids By 680 NEWS