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American Overdose

The Opioid Tragedy in Three Acts
Narrated by: Dan Woren
Length: 11 hrs and 55 mins
5 out of 5 stars (57 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

A comprehensive portrait of a uniquely American epidemic - devastating in its findings and damning in its conclusions

The opioid epidemic has been described as "one of the greatest mistakes of modern medicine." But calling it a mistake is a generous rewriting of the history of greed, corruption, and indifference that pushed the US into consuming more than 80 percent of the world's opioid painkillers.

Journeying through lives and communities wrecked by the epidemic, Chris McGreal reveals not only how Big Pharma hooked Americans on powerfully addictive drugs but the corrupting of medicine and public institutions that let the opioid makers get away with it.
The starting point for McGreal's deeply reported investigation is the miners promised that opioid painkillers would restore their wrecked bodies, but who became targets of "drug dealers in white coats".

A few heroic physicians warned of impending disaster. But American Overdose exposes the powerful forces they were up against, including the pharmaceutical industry's co-opting of the Food and Drug Administration and Congress in the drive to push painkillers - resulting in the resurgence of heroin cartels in the American heartland. McGreal tells the story, in terms both broad and intimate, of people hit by a catastrophe they never saw coming. Years in the making, its ruinous consequences will stretch years into the future.

©2018 Chris McGreal (P)2018 Hachette Audio

Critic Reviews

"A deftly researched account of America's opioid epidemic. McGreal's book is authoritative in tone and vernacular in style.... [A] powerful narrative." (Kirkus Reviews)

"[A] powerful encapsulation of that epidemic....a timely examination of hard-won lessons." (Nature)

"Staggering... Zola-esque in its dark twists and turns." (Literary Review)

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An important read

This book will make you angry, will make you scream at the greed , the laziness, the weakness, the indifference of all involved in the current opioid crisis. I am a physician- I went to many lectures and had drug reps tell me that patients in pain could not become addicted to prescription pain medicine. This flew in the face of my experience as an ER doctor. We are trained in medicine to not trust anecdotal evidence. What is the answer when the “scientific studies “ are misrepresented, poorly conducted or fraudulent.
This book is important for anyone dealing with the opioid crisis. It is well written and well researched. The reader has a wonderful voice. The book is easily understood by listeners without a scientific background

2 of 2 people found this review helpful