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FDA Panel Votes For More Restrictions On Vicodin
Written by Your 5News Team
Created on January 25, 2013 @ 5:03PM
 
(CBS NEWS) Federal health advisors want new restrictions on hydrocodone, the highly addictive ingredient found in Vicodin and other widely abused prescription painkillers.
 
The Food and Drug Administration's panel of drug safety specialists voted to subject hydrocodone drugs to the same restrictions as narcotics like oxycodone and morphine.
 
Hydrocodone is sold in combination pills like Vicodin, which mixes the drug with non-addictive painkillers like acetaminophen.
 
Doctors prescribe the medicines to treat pain from injuries, surgery, arthritis and other ailments.
 
Hydrocodone consistently ranks as the first or second most-abused medicine in the U.S. each year, according to the Drug Enforcement Agency.
 
The DEA has asked the FDA to reclassify hydrocodone as a schedule III drug, limiting which kinds of medical professionals can write a prescription and how many times it can be refilled.
 
An April, 2012 Drug Enforcement Administration report showed that 42 tons of pure hydrocodone were prescribed across U.S. pharmacies in 2010, enough to give 24 5-milligram Vicodins to every person in the United States.

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