I think that opioid medicines should be used to treat chronic pain. I think that it is only logical to think that opioid medicines, which are made with opium, might make some people addicted to an addictive compound. But there is no proof that taking something like such drugs will make somebody into a drug addict.
Until you have suffered with chronic pain, it is impossible to assess the true need for opioids. Yes, there is the danger of becoming addicted, perils of withdrawal and possibility of not functioning 100% intellectually. The choice between cutting off a finger or a toe is a similar choice. Chronic pain is debilitating, frightening and, in many cases, horrific. If opioids can prevent such suffering, they should be readily available from physicians.
I think they should be available to people who are in severe pain. Really, the only argument for controlling access to opioid medicines is the risk of becoming addicted to them. If someone is in permanent chronic intractable pain, then becoming addicted to the pain medication is the least of their worries, especially as they may never even have to suffer withdrawal.
People hear the word opiot or opiod and automatically assume it's a terrible thing. But the fact of the matter is that these medications give people with chronic pain a means to go about their daily business and still remain productive, rather than being bedridden and in misery all day.