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U.S. Opioid Painkiller Abuse May Be Leveling Off

Posted 10 hours ago by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Oct. 23, 2017 – The number of Americans abusing prescription painkillers has leveled off in recent years, but there is no apparent decline yet. That's the finding of a new study tracking the U.S. opioid abuse problem. Researchers found that after a large spike in the early 2000s, Americans' misuse of prescription opioid painkillers has plateaued in recent years. Still, the issue isn't going away: By 2014, the most recent survey year, close to 14 percent of U.S. adults and teenagers had ever abused the drugs – which include Vicodin (hydrocodone), OxyContin (oxycodone) and morphine. The findings underscore the importance of giving patients alternative ways to manage pain, said lead researcher Dr. Asokumar Buvanendran, vice chair of anesthesiology at Rush University Medical Center in Chicago. There are times when people need short-term pain relief with opioids. But for most ... Read more

Related support groups: Suboxone, Oxycodone, Hydrocodone, Tramadol, Percocet, Methadone, OxyContin, Vicodin, Norco, Fentanyl, Opiate Dependence, Morphine, Codeine, Lortab, Opana, Subutex, Dilaudid, Opana ER, Roxicodone, MS Contin

Can Aspirin Stop Liver Cancer in Hepatitis B Patients?

Posted 4 days ago by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, Oct. 20, 2017 – Daily aspirin may reduce the risk of liver cancer for people with hepatitis B infection, a new study suggests. Hepatitis B virus attacks the liver and can cause cirrhosis and liver cancer. Previous research suggests daily low-dose aspirin therapy may prevent cancer, but there is little clinical evidence on whether regular aspirin use can prevent liver cancer in people with hepatitis B. Researchers from Taiwan analyzed data from close to 205,000 patients with chronic hepatitis B. They found that those on daily aspirin were much less likely to develop liver cancer over five years than those who did not take aspirin. It's important to note, however, that the study only found these associations, but did not establish a cause-and-effect link. The findings are scheduled to be presented Monday at an American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases meeting, in ... Read more

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Hepatitis C Screening May Boost Opioid Treatment Success

Posted 4 days ago by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, Oct. 20, 2017 – Opioid abuse therapy may be more effective if patients are screened for hepatitis C as part of the program, a new Canadian study says. The research found a sharp drop in opioid abuse among patients after they were told they tested positive for the hepatitis C virus (HCV). Hepatitis C causes liver disease that can lead to cirrhosis (scarring of the liver), liver cancer and liver failure, the researchers said. "Our study showed awareness of HCV infection among this particular population may motivate them to reduce their consumption and hopefully high-risk behavior," said lead investigator Dr. Hooman Farhang Zangneh, a postdoctoral research fellow at the Toronto Centre for Liver Disease at Toronto General Hospital. The primary cause of hepatitis C transmission is infected blood, which is often transmitted through needle sharing to inject drugs. The study included ... Read more

Related support groups: Suboxone, Oxycodone, Hydrocodone, Tramadol, Percocet, Methadone, OxyContin, Vicodin, Norco, Fentanyl, Opiate Dependence, Morphine, Codeine, Lortab, Opiate Withdrawal, Opana, Hepatitis C, Subutex, Dilaudid, Opana ER

Around the World, Too Little Relief for Pain

Posted 10 days ago by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, Oct. 13, 2017 – Tens of millions of people worldwide who die in severe physical and mental distress each year could have an easier death if low-cost pain drugs were available in their countries, a new report says. Children account for more than 2.5 million of the almost 26 million people with serious illnesses who receive no palliative care or pain relief, according to the report. The findings came from an analysis of data on the care provided in 172 countries for people with any of 20 serious conditions, including HIV, cancer, heart disease, premature birth, tuberculosis, hemorrhagic fevers, lung and liver disease, malnutrition, dementia and trauma injuries. Of the 61 million people who endure severe physical or psychological suffering and pain each year, about 83 percent live in 100 low- and middle-income countries where there's little or no access to low-cost, off-patent ... Read more

Related support groups: Pain, Suboxone, Oxycodone, Back Pain, Hydrocodone, Tramadol, Percocet, Methadone, OxyContin, Vicodin, Norco, Fentanyl, Morphine, Codeine, Lortab, Chronic Pain, Tylenol, Opana, Ibuprofen, Naproxen

Medicare Could Do More to Stem Opioid Epidemic

Posted 14 days ago by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Oct. 10, 2017 – Medicare places few limits on opioid painkiller prescriptions, even in the face of recent U.S. government guidelines, researchers report. Yale University scientists say Medicare plans for people 65 and older are untapped resources for curbing the unnecessary use and abuse of drugs such as oxycodone (OxyContin) and hydrocodone (Vicodin). "People are looking for any way to control the increase in opioid-use disorder. This is one strategy," said study first author Dr. Elizabeth Samuels. She's a postdoctoral fellow in Yale's National Clinical Scholars Program. A previous study involving private insurers showed that certain practices can help curb use of addictive painkillers, the researchers said. Such measures include requiring prior authorization from insurers and setting quantity limits. For this study, Samuels and her colleagues analyzed the "formulary files" ... Read more

Related support groups: Suboxone, Oxycodone, Hydrocodone, Tramadol, Percocet, Methadone, OxyContin, Vicodin, Norco, Fentanyl, Opiate Dependence, Morphine, Codeine, Lortab, Opiate Withdrawal, Opana, Subutex, Dilaudid, Opana ER, Roxicodone

Heroin Taking Bigger Share of U.S. Opioid ODs

Posted 2 Oct 2017 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Oct. 2, 2017 – New U.S. hospital overdose data suggests that drug addicts are turning from prescription opioid painkillers to heroin as an easier way to get high, researchers report. Hospital and emergency room treatment rates for prescription opioid overdoses (such as OxyContin) decreased annually by about 5 percent between 2010 and 2014. This was about the same time tough new prescribing laws were drafted to combat the opioid epidemic, the study authors said. But ER treatment rates for heroin overdose skyrocketed at the same time. Heroin overdose rates increased at an annual rate of more than 31 percent after 2008, said senior researcher Tina Hernandez-Boussard. She's an associate professor with the Stanford University School of Medicine. These results provide "the first piece of real evidence" supporting what had been a strong suspicion that prescription painkiller addicts ... Read more

Related support groups: Suboxone, Oxycodone, Hydrocodone, Tramadol, Percocet, Methadone, OxyContin, Vicodin, Norco, Fentanyl, Opiate Dependence, Morphine, Codeine, Lortab, Opana, Subutex, Dilaudid, Heroin, Opana ER, Roxicodone

Coffee Doesn't Help Parkinson's Motor Disorders

Posted 28 Sep 2017 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, Sept. 28, 2017 – Regular cups of coffee will not ease tremors and movement problems caused by Parkinson's disease, despite prior evidence that caffeine might help, a new clinical trial reports. Earlier short-term results from the same trial had shown caffeine improved the motor function of a small group of Parkinson patients, researchers said. But long-term results from the trial now show that patients received no benefit from caffeine by six to 18 months after starting therapy, said lead researcher Dr. Ronald Postuma, an associate professor of neurology at McGill University Health Center in Montreal. "Caffeine made no difference to Parkinson's," Postuma said. "You can't use it as a medication for Parkinson's." The findings will be disappointing for many Parkinson's patients who turned to coffee to help their symptoms. The first results from the caffeine trial made a big ... Read more

Related support groups: Benadryl, Parkinson's Disease, Caffeine, Diphenhydramine, Fioricet, Mirapex, Excedrin, Requip, Ropinirole, Sinemet, Alert, Pramipexole, Levodopa, Cabergoline, Fiorinal, Cogentin, Azilect, Bromocriptine, Emsam, Carbidopa

Post-Op Opioids: How Much Is Enough?

Posted 27 Sep 2017 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, Sept. 27, 2017 – Amid efforts to stem the U.S. opioid crisis, a new study suggests how long patients should take prescription opioid painkillers after surgery. After general surgery, the ideal duration is four to nine days, said researchers from Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston. For women's health procedures, four to 13 days is appropriate, while six to 15 days of narcotic painkillers is reasonable for musculoskeletal surgery, according to the study. "An opioid prescription after surgery should balance adequate pain treatment with minimizing the duration of treatment and potential for medication complications, including issues with dependence," wrote Dr. Louis Nguyen and colleagues. Overuse of opioid painkillers – such as OxyContin (oxycodone) and Vicodin (hydrocodone) – has contributed to the opioid abuse epidemic and the skyrocketing rate of overdose deaths in the ... Read more

Related support groups: Suboxone, Oxycodone, Surgery, Hydrocodone, Tramadol, Percocet, Methadone, OxyContin, Vicodin, Norco, Fentanyl, Morphine, Codeine, Lortab, Opana, Subutex, Dilaudid, Opana ER, Roxicodone, MS Contin

Stopping Aspirin Tied to Quick Rise in Heart Attack, Stroke Risk

Posted 26 Sep 2017 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Sept. 25, 2017 – People who stop following their doctor's advice to take a daily aspirin may see their risk of heart attack and stroke quickly rise, a new study suggests. Low-dose aspirin is a standard therapy for people at increased risk of a heart attack or stroke. But many eventually stop taking it, or at least consider quitting, said Dr. Johan Sundstrom, the lead researcher on the new study. Sometimes it's because of side effects, such as upset stomach, according to Sundstrom, a professor at Uppsala University, in Sweden. Other times, he said, it's simple "forgetfulness." His team wanted to find out what happened when patients quit their low-dose aspirin. The investigators looked at medical records from more than 600,000 Swedish adults who'd been prescribed aspirin to prevent cardiovascular trouble. (In Sweden, it's given by prescription, not over-the-counter, as in the ... Read more

Related support groups: Aspirin, Ischemic Stroke, Heart Attack, Excedrin, Transient Ischemic Attack, Myocardial Infarction, Aggrenox, Alka-Seltzer, Fiorinal, Excedrin Migraine, Arthritis Pain, Ecotrin, Ischemic Stroke - Prophylaxis, Fiorinal with Codeine, Norgesic, Bayer Aspirin, Arthritis Pain Formula, Soma Compound, Excedrin Extra Strength, Norgesic Forte

CDC Launches Opioid Campaign in Hard-Hit States

Posted 26 Sep 2017 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Sept. 26, 2017 – The U. S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has launched a campaign to reduce overdose deaths from prescription opioid painkillers. Between 1999 and 2015, more than 183,000 people in the United States died from prescription opioid overdoses such as OxyContin (oxycodone) and Vicodin (hydrocodone). The goal of the CDC's Rx Awareness campaign is to increase knowledge of the risks of prescription opioids and stop inappropriate use. Personal accounts from recovering opioid abusers and people who've lost loved ones will be featured. "It only takes a little to lose a lot" is the campaign tagline. It will be featured in videos, audio ads, social media ads, internet banners, web graphics, billboards and posters. Campaign ads are planned to run for the next 14 weeks in Kentucky, Massachusetts, New Mexico and Ohio. The campaign will expand to other states as ... Read more

Related support groups: Suboxone, Oxycodone, Hydrocodone, Tramadol, Percocet, Methadone, OxyContin, Vicodin, Norco, Fentanyl, Opiate Dependence, Morphine, Codeine, Lortab, Opiate Withdrawal, Opana, Subutex, Dilaudid, Opana ER, Roxicodone

ERs Prescribing Opioids at Lower Doses, Shorter Durations

Posted 26 Sep 2017 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Sept. 26, 2017 – Emergency room doctors write lower-dose, shorter-term prescriptions for opioids than other doctors do, new research shows. The study, led by scientists at the Mayo Clinic, challenges views that emergency departments are the main source of prescriptions for the powerful painkillers whose use – and misuse – has soared in recent years. The research also suggests that patients who get an opioid prescription – such as for oxycodone (OxyContin) – during an ER visit are less likely to abuse the drugs over the long term. "There are a few things that many people assume about opioids, and one is that, in the emergency department, they give them out like candy," said the study's lead author, Molly Jeffery. She is scientific director of the Mayo Clinic division of emergency medicine research, in Rochester, Minn. "This idea didn't really fit with the clinical ... Read more

Related support groups: Pain, Suboxone, Oxycodone, Hydrocodone, Tramadol, Percocet, Methadone, OxyContin, Vicodin, Norco, Fentanyl, Morphine, Codeine, Lortab, Opana, Subutex, Dilaudid, Opana ER, Roxicodone, MS Contin

FDA Conducts Major Global Operation to Protect Consumers From Potentially Dangerous Prescription Drugs Sold Online

Posted 26 Sep 2017 by Drugs.com

September 25, 2017 – The U.S. Food and Drug Administration, in partnership with international regulatory and law enforcement agencies, recently took action against more than 500 websites that illegally sell potentially dangerous, unapproved versions of prescription medicines, including opioids, antibiotics and injectable epinephrine products to American consumers. These actions were part of a major global operation that the FDA participated in to target illegal drugs being marketed online, and shipped and distributed through the postal system, directly to American consumers. Among other actions, the FDA also issued warning letters to the operators of a majority of the illegal websites that were targeted in the operation and worked with internet registrars to confiscate certain websites. Patients who buy prescription medicines from illegal online pharmacies may be putting their health ... Read more

Related support groups: Suboxone, Oxycodone, Hydrocodone, Tramadol, Percocet, Methadone, OxyContin, Vicodin, Norco, Fentanyl, Morphine, Codeine, Lortab, Opana, Subutex, Dilaudid, Opana ER, Roxicodone, MS Contin, Butrans

Addictive Opioids Common for People on Dialysis

Posted 21 Sep 2017 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, Sept. 21, 2017 – Kidney dialysis patients in the United States have high rates of prescriptions for opioid painkillers and many also receive high doses of the potentially addictive drugs, a new study finds. Pain is common in dialysis patients, the study authors explained in a news release from the American Society of Nephrology. But these patients can't take certain drugs because their failing kidneys can't process them. This makes pain control difficult. For the new study, researchers reviewed Medicare data from 2006 through 2010. The investigators found that nearly two-thirds of dialysis patients received at least one opioid prescription every year. More than 20 percent received repeated prescriptions. In addition, more than 25 percent of patients given opioid prescriptions received higher-than-recommended doses. The use of opioids was associated with increased risks of ... Read more

Related support groups: Pain, Suboxone, Oxycodone, Hydrocodone, Tramadol, Percocet, Methadone, OxyContin, Vicodin, Norco, Fentanyl, Morphine, Codeine, Lortab, Chronic Pain, Opana, Subutex, Dilaudid, Opana ER, Roxicodone

Opioid ODs Have Cut Into U.S. Life Expectancy: CDC

Posted 19 Sep 2017 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Sept. 19, 2017 – Rising death rates from opioid abuse are chipping away at Americans' life expectancy, a U.S. government study finds. Between 2000 and 2015, researchers found, U.S. life expectancy increased overall – from nearly 77 years to 79 years. But buried within that broad pattern were some ominous trends. The death rate from drug overdoses more than doubled, while that from opioids, specifically, more than tripled, said lead researcher Dr. Deborah Dowell. She is with the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's division of unintentional injury prevention. By 2015, drug-related deaths had shaved 3.5 months off of Americans' life expectancy, Dowell's team found. And whites were the hardest hit. Most of that lost life span was pinned on opioids, including heroin and prescription painkillers like OxyContin (oxycodone), Vicodin (hydrocodone) and codeine. Earlier ... Read more

Related support groups: Suboxone, Oxycodone, Hydrocodone, Tramadol, Percocet, Methadone, OxyContin, Vicodin, Norco, Fentanyl, Opiate Dependence, Morphine, Codeine, Lortab, Opiate Withdrawal, Opana, Subutex, Dilaudid, Opana ER, Roxicodone

Can Coffee or Tea Extend Survival With Diabetes?

Posted 14 Sep 2017 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, Sept. 14, 2017 – A diagnosis of diabetes comes with a long list of "don'ts." But new research suggests that coffee and tea probably shouldn't be off-limits because each may help prevent an early death. Well, at least if you're a woman with diabetes, that is. Men with diabetes didn't seem to reap the rewards of consuming caffeine in the new study. The research found that women with diabetes who had up to one regular cup of coffee a day (100 milligrams of caffeine) were 51 percent less likely to die than women who consumed no caffeine during the 11-year study. "As caffeine is consumed by more than 80 percent of the world's adult population, it is essential to understand the impact of this factor concerning cardiovascular, cancer and all-cause mortality," said study researcher Dr. Joao Sergio Neves, an endocrinology resident at Sao Joao Hospital Center in Porto, Portugal. "Our ... Read more

Related support groups: Caffeine, Fioricet, Excedrin, Insulin Resistance, Pre-Diabetes, Alert, Fiorinal, Excedrin Migraine, Cafergot, Diabetes Mellitus, Prevention of Cardiovascular Disease, Cardiovascular Risk Reduction, Keep Going, Fiorinal with Codeine, Esgic, Norgesic, Fioricet with Codeine, Headache Relief, Acetaminophen/Butalbital/Caffeine, Esgic-Plus

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