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Anaheim doctor faces medical board discipline for over-prescribing opioids to patient

Published On: 08-23-2016 in Category: Opioids


A medical practitioner from Anaheim is facing California Medical Board discipline for repeatedly prescribing opiates to a patient with a history of opioid abuse. The 25-year-old patient succumbed to accidental drug overdose on May 12, 2011. The practitioner, Dr. Clyde Ikuta, is accused of gross negligence for prescribing methadone to the patient without conducting a drug test.

As per the charges, Ikuta continued to prescribe methadone despite the patient’s complaint that his medication had been stolen just after five days of receiving prescriptions for the drug. The unidentified patient had been receiving consultations from Ikuta between August 2010 and May 2011 and visited the doctor two days prior to his death. Ikuta had given him a prescription for 140 methadone tablets, of which only 64 were left at the time of his death.

According to the California Medical Board, the accused doctor was found guilty in two other instances as well. He prescribed methadone to his patients with a history of heroin abuse. Before writing the prescription, he did not bother to conduct any drug test. The California Medical Board can either publicly reprimand or revoke Ikuta’s medical license.

Drug overdose cases ripple across America

The United States is fighting a tough battle against opioid overdose epidemic. In 2014, more than 28,000 people in the country succumbed to opioids, including prescription opioid pain relievers and heroin, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). As per the report, the number of deaths involving opioids, including prescription opioid painkillers and heroin, as well as the amount of prescription opioids sold in the U.S. have nearly quadrupled since 1999.

Every county across the U.S. has witnessed a significant rise in deaths due to drug overdoses, primarily driven by an increase in addiction to heroin and prescription opioids. The country has been facing the devastating consequences of opioid addiction that affect the health, and social and economic welfare of the nation. In the ongoing fight against prescription drug and heroin abuse, the Obama administration also announced to expand access to medication-assisted treatments for opioid use disorders. In fact, the administration has increased the cap for prescribing buprenorphine, a medication used to treat opioid addiction, from 100 to 200 patients per doctor.

Even the CDC has introduced guidelines for prescribing opioid drugs, recommending that opioids cannot be the first-line therapy. Thus, it is important for doctors to understand the severity of the associated risks and adverse effects of opioids before prescribing such medications to their patients.

Seeking professional help

If you have a loved one who is battling drug addiction and is in need of addiction treatment, do not hesitate to call the Anaheim Drug Treatment and Rehab Center. We are committed to helping those who are struggling to find effective addiction treatment options in California. You may reach us at our 24/7 helpline number 916-379-7248 or chat online to talk to treatment specialists who will assist you in finding the right treatment program.

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