The documentary “Dr. Feelgood,” was produced by Bungalow Pictures and it is available on Netflix.
Every year, approximately 200 million prescriptions for opioid painkillers are given to patients. This documentary discuses the pros and cons of these drugs and tries to determine at what point should a doctor not prescribe opioid painkillers. The documentary also takes and in-depth look into a criminal case involving Dr. Hurwitz.
Dr. Hurwitz was a pain doctor in the Virginia area, until he was arrested for overprescribing medication. He admitted to the DEA, on average his patients were taking 70 pills a day. Two of his patients died indirectly from overconsumption of opioid drugs.
Upon further investigation, the DEA found some patients receiving thousands of pills a month and selling those pills on the street. They also found medical records showing a few patients tested positive for heroin and/or cocaine. Dr. Hurwitz ignored the drug test results and continued prescribing powerful painkillers to those patients.
Dr. Hurwitz also had patients suffering from chronic diseases and severe nerve damage. These patients had a legitimate need for powerful painkillers. One such patient committed suicide, because he could no longer get the medication he needed for his chronic pain after Dr. Hurwitz was arrested.
The opioid painkillers can be a miracle drug for people with severe chronic pain. Unfortunately, the drugs are also addictive and have a history of being abused. This creates a problem that is not easy to fix.
How can a doctor know how much pain their patient is actually feeling?
How can a doctor tell if their patient truly needs a powerful pain medication?