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The abuse of prescription pain medications has become fairly common as far as media coverage is concerned. According to ABC news, Vicodin and other narcotic pain medications from the schedule 3 class are under review to be moved to a more tightly controlled schedule 2 class. Some medical professionals feel  that the tighter controls may prevent those  who truly need the medications from getting them. Others believe that the tighter controls are necessary when one considers the recent increase of prescription pain medication overdoses which in some cases have led to death. Prescription pain medication like other drugs, works well when used for its intended purpose and as directed. Dr. O’Toole, advises patients in their preoperative appointment about their postoperative instructions. These instructions often include the proper use of prescription pain medications following surgery. Some patients may also be prescribed muscle relaxers for procedures including subpectoral breast augmentation and abdominoplasty. These procedures disturb the muscles and can cause a bit of discomfort.  Narcotic pain relievers and the muscle relaxers are to be used only as needed after the first few days. Immediately following surgery and for the first few days pain medications help to keep the patient calm. Most patients who are prescribed pain medication after surgery will use it only for the first 7 to 14 days . Patients should protect their narcotic pain medications and account for each pill. After the recovery from surgery patients should discard any unused medications.

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