Drugs

Posted under Prescription Drug Addiction

Study Examines Prescription Drug Overdose by Neighborhoods

The increase in recreational prescription drug use has resulted in more emergency room visits and fatal overdoses. These drugs are popular with teens who can often easily obtain them in their parents’ or grandparents’ medicine cabinets. 

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Posted under Baby Boomers, Prescription Drug Addiction

Drug Use Among Seniors on the Rise

Recent data released by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) shows drug use among seniors is on the rise. While fewer teens are using, the number of older Americans getting high has been going up for the last decade. Most of the changes come from use of marijuana, but prescription medications being used inappropriately is also a problem.

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Posted under Heroin

Krokodil Hits the American Drug Scene

A devastating, highly addictive and very dangerous drug that originated in Russia has made its appearance in the U.S. Called krokodil, after the Russian word for crocodile, this drug is cheap, homemade and destructive. Law enforcement, addiction specialists, emergency room workers and physicians have feared the debut of this drug on the U.S. market. Education to demonstrate the damage krokodil can inflict may help to prevent its use and the resulting health consequences.

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Posted under Methamphetamines

Methamphetamine Abstinence Syndrome

Methamphetamine abstinence syndrome is an unofficial term that some drug abuse specialists use to describe a collection of symptoms frequently found in long-term methamphetamine users who enter treatment and stop taking the drug. Because these symptoms can easily appear in people who don’t use meth or any other drug, doctors refer to the condition as a syndrome, not a distinct form of disease or illness. Most people with methamphetamine abstinence syndrome develop relatively mild problems that disappear after a few days to a few weeks. However, some people develop more serious problems and/or develop problems that last for unusually extended periods of time. Continue Reading

Posted under Prescription Drug Addiction

Is Modafinil a Drug Too Good to Be True?

Modafinil was given the green light by the FDA back in 1998 to treat symptoms of narcolepsy and certain sleep disorders. Over the years, the drug’s use has expanded to include treatment of fatigue, depression and Parkinson’s disease, although these are not usages recommended by the manufacturers. Meanwhile, anyone from truck drivers to soldiers to students looking for a way to stay alert has probably heard of modafinil. Now reports are surfacing that the drug may not be as risk-free as once believed and its use for other-than-recommended symptom management may not be entirely safe. Continue Reading

Posted under Marijuana

Links Between Marijuana Use and HPV-Related Cancers

Human papillomavirus, or HPV, is the general name for over 100 closely related viruses that spread through genital, anal, or oral sexual contact. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), HPV ranks as the most common form of sexually transmitted infection in the United States. HPV infection is related to eventual development of a variety of cancers located in the genitals, anus, mouth, head and neck. Current evidence indicates the presence of a strong link between marijuana use and HPV-related head and neck cancers. However, this link may stem from specific methods of marijuana use, rather than from the effects of marijuana itself. Continue Reading

Posted under Drugs

IV Drug Abuse and Cellulitis

Cellulitis is the medical term for a specific type of infection that occurs when bacteria gain a foothold in broken skin. While some forms of this infection produce localized or relatively minor health problems, other forms can spread in the bloodstream and trigger the onset of a variety of severe, potentially fatal health complications. IV (intravenous) drug abusers have significantly increased risks for developing cellulitis. In some cases, people who use IV drugs also have additional health problems that increase the likelihood of highly dangerous cellulitis-related complications. Continue Reading

Posted under Methamphetamines

Methamphetamine Use and Acute Necrotizing Ulcerative Gingivitis

Acute necrotizing ulcerative gingivitis (ANUG) is the medical term for an oral disorder that involves a serious bacterial infection in the gums and the subsequent formation of gum ulcers. If left untreated, this disorder can produce serious complications that include gum tissue destruction, bone infection, tooth loss, and a spread of infection to other parts of the body. People who use/abuse the illegal drug methamphetamine have significantly increased risks for developing ANUG. Some of these risks come from the direct effects of the drug, while others come from an ongoing lack of oral hygiene commonly associated with habitual methamphetamine use. Continue Reading

Posted under Drugs

IV Drug Abuse and Septic Arthritis

Septic arthritis is a term doctors use to describe joint deterioration that stems from infection with some kind of microorganism. While viruses, fungi, and bacteria can all produce this type of infection, certain species of bacteria rank as the most prominent causes of the disorder. IV drug users/abusers have unusually high risks for developing septic arthritis. These risks stem from the frequency with which bacteria and other microorganisms are introduced into the bloodstream of people who inject drugs into their veins. Joints particularly susceptible to septic arthritis in IV drug users include the sternoclavicular joint in the upper chest and the sacroiliac joint in the pelvis. Continue Reading

Posted under Methamphetamines

Methamphetamine Use and Histoplasmosis

Histoplasmosis is the medical term for an infection caused by breathing in spores of the fungus species Histoplasma capsulatum. In most cases, infections from this microorganism stay within the lungs and at worst produce only relatively mild symptoms. However, in some cases, they can cause more serious lung problems or spread to other parts of the body that include the heart, adrenal glands, and the membranes surrounding the brain and spinal cord. Habitual methamphetamine users develop a number of immune system problems that can make them unusually susceptible to histoplasmosis, as well as particularly poor health outcomes associated with the disease. Continue Reading