Curbing the Opioid Crisis: A Special Role for Pharmacists
Opioids are pharmaceutical substances that have robust analgesic and central nervous system depression effects. Because of their potential to cause euphoria via functional changes to the mesolimbic motivational and reward circuits, opioids are the most commonly misused prescribed drug, associated with high risks of dependency and opioid use disorder (OUD). Today, OUD is higher than ever before reaching epidemic proportions with more than 2.5 million Americans affected and over 130 opioid-related deaths per day. The development of OUD and the story behind the opioid crisis is multifaceted and complex.
This webinar sets forth to lay a foundational understanding and framework of OUD, with special consideration for terminology, diagnostic criteria, pharmacological effects, and pathophysiological processes. From here, this webinar will review the contributory factors that have led to the present opioid crisis, including pharmaceutical company false claims on its addictive potential, poor research methodology, inadequate alternative analgesic therapy, stigmatization, poor understanding, and limited education. Particular consideration will then be placed on the special role pharmacists can play in mitigating the opioid crisis, including prescription and pharmacy monitoring, patient education, alternative pain management solutions, and medication-assisted treatment for patients with OUD.
- Pharmacy Technicians
- Pharmacy Assistants
- Other healthcare professionals
- Define and describe opioid use disorder (OUD) according to its diagnostic criteria, risk factors, and evaluation.
- Clarify terminology related to OUD, such as addiction, dependency, tolerance, withdrawal and relapse.
- Enumerate the different classes of opioids.
- Discuss the physiology and pharmacology of opioids, as well as the pathogenesis of OUD.
- Grasp the impact of the opioid crisis by looking at its epidemiology.
- Identify the key events and factors that contributed to the development of the opioid crisis
- Understand the role of the pharmacist in this setting and the many ways the pharmacist can help towards solving the opioid crisis.
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DAVID MASTROPIETRO, PhD, RPh
Assistant Professor of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Nova Southeastern University
Dr. David Mastropietro is an Assistant Professor of Pharmaceutical Sciences at Nova Southeastern University, where he teaches the art of pharmacy compounding and the science of formulation development using classroom and laboratory methodologies. Dr. Mastropietro is also a pharmacist with over 18 years of experience practicing in a number of diverse settings. He has 6 years experience in the development, testing, and manufacturing of medications and dietary supplements where he serves a Senior Advisor for Formulation Development and Product Commercialization, as well as Quality Control Specialist for Private Label Contract Manufacturers. In addition to his teaching, pharmacist, and advisory roles, Dr. Mastropietro is active in research with over 24 journal publications, 60 presentations, 3 book chapters, and 7 US & World patent applications.
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