Many primary care physicians have misconceptions about opioid abuse, a new survey finds. Almost half of internists, family physicians and general practitioners incorrectly believe that abuse-deterrent pills are less addictive than standard opioid painkillers, according to the survey.
The researchers, from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, say this lack of understanding may be contributing to the problem of prescription drug abuse and addiction, PsychCentral reports.
“Physicians and patients may mistakenly view these medicines as safe in one form and dangerous in another, but these products are addictive no matter how you take them,” study leader G. Caleb Alexander, MD, said in a news release. “If doctors and patients fail to understand this, they may believe opioids are safer than is actually the case and prescribe them more readily than they should.”