NORMAN — A controversial Utah doctor defended the concept of “pseudoaddiction” Wednesday and blamed insurance companies for contributing to the nation’s opioid crisis.

Dr. Lynn Webster testified as a witness for Johnson & Johnson and its subsidiaries in a Cleveland County District Court case where the state of Oklahoma has accused opioid manufacturers of helping cause the state’s opioid crisis.

The Utah doctor has drawn much criticism for his support of the concept of “pseudoaddiction,” which is the idea that a person who is exhibiting drug-seeking or other addictive behavior may not actually be addicted but may be acting that way because the patient is not receiving high enough dosages of opioids to relieve pain.

Critics say promotion of that concept encourages doctors to prescribe more opioids to patients who are exhibiting addictive behaviors, which can worsen their addictions and lead to overdose deaths.


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