DAVID GREENE, HOST:
And it may soon be much harder to get prescription painkillers like Vicodin and OxyContin. The Food and Drug Administration announced yesterday that it's recommending tighter regulation of these kinds of drugs, which are known as opioids. The FDA says the abuse of drugs like this has, quote, "reached epidemic proportions in certain parts of the United States." Opioids are highly addictive and they are abused by millions of people.
Chronic-pain sufferers though have been fighting have been fighting the FDA's move. They say new regulations would limit access to something they essentially need to survive. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.