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Last Updated
April 19, 2017
NEWSROOM > Latest News > 2015 News
Current | 2016 News | 2015 News | Prior to 2015

December 23, 2015
Call for Comments: U.S. Task Force Backs Preventive Statin Use for Adults 40+
The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) proposed recommending low- to moderate-dose statins for 
primary prevention in adults 40 to 75 with at least one cardiovascular disease risk factor and a 10-year risk of 10% 
or greater. Risk factors includes high total cholesterol or triglycerides, high blood pressure, diabetes and smoking. 
Recommendations are available for public comments on the USPSTF website until Jan. 25, 2016. ( Source: Reuters)
December 15, 2015
Drug Overdose Deaths Near 50,000 in 2014
More than 47,000 Americans died of a drug overdose in 2014, an increase of 7 percent from the previous year, 
according to new data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.  The increase was driven largely by 
deaths from heroin and prescription opioids, the Associated Press reports. Almost 19,000 deaths were due to opioid 
painkillers, an increase of 16 percent from 2013. Deaths from heroin overdoses increased 28 percent, to about 
10,500, the article notes.

The rise in opioid-related deaths is due partly to synthetic opioids such as fentanyl and tramadol, according to a 
government news release. Heroin is often cut with fentanyl in order to increase its effect.

In March, the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) issued a nationwide alert in response to a surge in overdose 
deaths from heroin laced with fentanyl, the most potent opioid available for medical use. According to the DEA, 
fentanyl and fentanyl analogues produced in illicit clandestine labs are up to 100 times more powerful than 
morphine and 30-50 times more powerful than heroin.  Fentanyl is potentially lethal, even at very low levels, 
according to the DEA. Federal drug agents say in the last two years, Mexican cartels have increased production of a 
variant of fentanyl called acetyl fentanyl, and are smuggling it into the United States. (Source: CDC)
December 15, 2015
Research: Addressing Potentially Inappropriate Prescribing in Older Patients in Primary
Potentially inappropriate prescribing (PIP) is common in older people and can result in increased morbidity, adverse 
drug events, and hospitalizations. The OPTI-SCRIPT study (Optimizing Prescribing for Older People in Primary Care, 
a cluster-randomized controlled trial) tested the effectiveness of a multifaceted intervention for reducing PIP in 
primary care. Participants received an intervention incorporating academic detailing; review of medicines with web-
based pharmaceutical treatment algorithms that provide recommended alternative-treatment options; and tailored 
patient information leaflets. At intervention completion, patients in the intervention group had significantly lower 
odds of having PIP than patients in the control group.
December 14, 2015
Prescribing of Opioids Widespread for Medicare Population
Most prescriptions for opioid painkillers are made by the broad swath of U.S. general practitioners, not a limited 
group of specialists, according to a study by researchers at the Stanford University School of Medicine that was 
published in JAMA Internal Medicine. Researchers found that the top 10% of opioid prescribers account for 57% of 
opioid prescriptions, a rate comparable to that found in the Medicare data for prescribers of all drugs. Most 
prescriptions for opioid painkillers are made by the broad swath of U.S. general practitioners, not by a limited group 
of specialists, according to a study by researchers at the Stanford University School of Medicine.
December 9, 2015
Animal Health Literacy: Focus on Pet Medicines
Animal Health Literacy means timely information for the benefit of all animals and their humans. 
With continuous communication and outreach, the US Food and Drug Administration Center for
Veterinary Medicine (CVM) strives to enhance the public trust, promote safe and effective use of
the animal health products the Agency regulates, and share scientific endeavors. 
•	Advice to Dog Owners Whose Pets Take NSAIDsAll Creatures Great and Small: Properly
Medicate Them AllClient Information Sheets—Take-Home Safety
KnowledgeConsumer Advice on Pet Exposure to Prescription
Topical Pain Medications Containing FlurbiprofenGet the Facts about Pain Relievers for PetsMedications for Your Pet ... Questions for Your
VetOnline Pet Pharmacies: Be A.W.A.R.E.Proper Storage of Pet Meds, Food, and Treats Purchasing Pet Drugs Online: Buyer Beware
(video)Taking Care of Pets During a Disaster or
Emergency T.A.L.K. Before You Treat – Medicating Your PetTreating Pain in Your Dog

CVM provides reliable, science-based information to promote animal and human health. More information and Publicaciones en Español del.