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Don't Punish Pregnant Women for Opioid Use, Docs Say

Posted 2 days 20 hours ago by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Feb. 20, 2017 – Prevention and treatment, not legal action, should be the focus when dealing with pregnant women who use opioids, a leading pediatricians' group says. Some states prosecute and jail pregnant women for substance abuse, but the new statement from the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) warns that punitive measures have no health benefits for mother or child and may deter women from seeking help. "Over the last two decades, use of opioids surged throughout the U.S., and as they did, we have seen an increase in opioid-related complications in nearly every population, including pregnant women and their infants," statement co-author Dr. Stephen Patrick said in an AAP news release. "Our response should be grounded in public health. We should be bolstering efforts targeted at primary prevention, like prescription drug-monitoring programs, and expanding treatment ... Read more

Related support groups: Oxycodone, Hydrocodone, Percocet, OxyContin, Vicodin, Norco, Opiate Dependence, Morphine, Codeine, Lortab, Opiate Withdrawal, Roxicodone, MS Contin, Drug Dependence, Endocet, Kadian, Acetaminophen/Hydrocodone, Cheratussin AC, Delivery, Tylenol with Codeine

Kids' OD Risk Rises When Opioids Left Out at Home

Posted 2 days 21 hours ago by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Feb. 20, 2017 – A child's risk of a potentially fatal drug overdose more than doubles if a parent brings home a prescription opioid painkiller like oxycodone, codeine or morphine, a new study reports. When their mother is prescribed an opioid for pain as opposed to a non-narcotic drug like aspirin, ibuprofen or acetaminophen, young children are about two-and-a-half times more likely to accidentally overdose, the researchers found. "The opioid epidemic has not skipped children," said Dr. Yaron Finkelstein, a pediatric emergency doctor with the Hospital for Sick Children in Toronto. "They are also vulnerable to it, even as a third party or innocent bystander." Finkelstein is lead researcher on the study, published online Feb. 20 in Pediatrics. Another study in the journal helps explain the source of some of this risk. Nearly 70 percent of prescription opioids in homes with ... Read more

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

Anti-Addiction Meds Given in ER Can Help Battle Abuse

Posted 4 days ago by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, Feb. 17, 2017 – People addicted to opioids treated in a hospital emergency department do better when they receive medication to reduce opioid cravings, researchers report. "The ED [emergency department] visit is an ideal opportunity to identify patients with opioid use disorder and initiate treatment and direct referral, similar to best practices for other diseases, such as high blood pressure and diabetes," said study co-leader Dr. Gail D'Onofrio in a Yale University news release. D'Onofrio is chair of emergency medicine at the university. The study looked at 290 people addicted to opioids who went to an emergency department. They received one of three treatments: a referral to addiction treatment services; a short interview including discussion of treatment; or a brief interview and the medication buprenorphine. The patients given medication also continued treatment with ... Read more

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

Chronic Pain More Likely for Poor, Less Educated: Study

Posted 5 days ago by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, Feb. 17, 2017 – Chronic pain is much more common among poor, less educated older Americans than their wealthier, more educated peers, a new study suggests. "I found that people with lower levels of education and wealth don't just have more pain, they also have more severe pain," said study author Hanna Grol-Prokopczyk. She's an assistant professor of sociology from the University at Buffalo in Buffalo, N.Y. "I also looked at pain-related disability, meaning that pain is interfering with the ability to do normal work or household activities. And again, people with less wealth and education are more likely to experience this disability," she added in a university news release. In the analysis of 12 years of data from more than 19,000 people aged 51 and older, those with the least education were 80 percent more likely to have chronic pain than those with the most education. People ... Read more

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

Some Docs May Help Fuel Opioid Abuse Epidemic

Posted 7 days ago by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 15, 2017 – You may be more likely to wind up a long-term user of opioid painkillers if you're treated by a doctor who frequently prescribes those drugs, a new study reports. Emergency room patients are at greater risk for long-term opioid use even after a single prescription from an ER doctor who regularly prescribes the painkillers, researchers found. "If a patient happened to see a high opioid-prescribing doctor, their chance of getting an opioid is over three times higher," said study author Dr. Michael Barnett. He's an assistant professor of health policy and management at the Harvard T. H. Chan School of Public Health in Boston. "Patients who are treated by frequent prescribers also are 30 percent more likely to develop long-term use over the next year," Barnett continued. One out of every 48 people newly prescribed an opioid will become a long-term user, based on ... Read more

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

Opioids and Alcohol a Dangerous Cocktail

Posted 15 days ago by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 8, 2017 – Drinking alcohol while taking powerful opioid painkillers can trigger a potentially deadly respiratory problem, particularly in seniors, a new study warns. "Unfortunately, we're seeing more fatalities and people in emergency rooms after having misused or abused legally prescribed opioids, like oxycodone, while having consumed alcohol," said study author Dr. Albert Dahan. "Respiratory depression [where breathing becomes very shallow or stops temporarily] is a potentially fatal complication of opioid use. We found alcohol exacerbated the already harmful respiratory effects of opioids," Dahan said. Dahan is head of the Anesthesia and Pain Research Unit at Leiden University Medical Center in the Netherlands. In the study, the researchers assessed how mixing the opioid painkiller oxycodone and alcohol affected 12 younger volunteers, aged 21 to 28, and 12 older ... Read more

Related support groups: Pain, Oxycodone, Back Pain, Hydrocodone, Methadone, Percocet, Tramadol, Chronic Pain, OxyContin, Fentanyl, Opiate Dependence, Morphine, Codeine, Opiate Withdrawal, Opana, Subutex, Dilaudid, Breakthrough Pain, Opana ER, Roxicodone

Amnesia Affecting Some Opioid Abusers

Posted 26 Jan 2017 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, Jan. 26, 2017 – Short-term memory loss may be yet another price of America's opioid addiction epidemic. Massachusetts health officials reported Thursday a cluster of 14 patients in that state who experienced problems remembering things just told to them. Doctors call this sudden-onset amnesia. The patients also had abnormal results on MRI brain scans. And researchers believe this might be the first sign of a new type of amnesia caused by drug use, likely opioids. "The best thing that could happen is that maybe this would be nothing," said report co-author Dr. Alfred DeMaria Jr., Massachusetts state epidemiologist. "But we are suspicious that something is going on possibly related to substance abuse that was not recognized before." From 2012 to 2016, 14 cases of people with the unusual neurological problem were identified from medical records. Thirteen of the 14 were either ... Read more

Related support groups: Anxiety, Generalized Anxiety Disorder, Xanax, Oxycodone, Anxiety and Stress, Percocet, OxyContin, Klonopin, Clonazepam, Opiate Dependence, Morphine, Ativan, Valium, Opiate Withdrawal, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, Social Anxiety Disorder, Lorazepam, Alprazolam, Diazepam, Heroin

Steep Rise in Births to U.S. Women Using Opioids

Posted 17 Jan 2017 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Jan. 17, 2017 – Over a decade, there was a nearly fivefold increase in the number of babies born each year to American women who have used opioids, a federal government report says. There was also a dramatic rise in the number of infants born with a dependency on opioids, the report found. These drugs include heroin and prescription painkillers such as fentanyl, oxycodone (OxyContin) and hydrocodone/acetaminophen (Vicodin). "It is critical that pregnant women of all ages have access to prevention, treatment and recovery services that meet their specialized needs," said Kana Enomoto, from the U.S. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA). "Programs that provide pregnant women with access to opioid use disorder treatment and reproductive health services can help ensure that these future mothers and their children live healthier, happier, and more ... Read more

Related support groups: Birth Control, Contraception, Oxycodone, Hydrocodone, Percocet, OxyContin, Vicodin, Norco, Fentanyl, Opiate Dependence, Lortab, Opiate Withdrawal, Heroin, Roxicodone, Drug Dependence, Endocet, Duragesic, Acetaminophen/Hydrocodone, Delivery, Percocet 10/325

Kids Born to Opioid-Addicted Moms Seem to Fare Poorly in School

Posted 16 Jan 2017 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Jan. 16, 2017 – Children exposed to addictive drugs in the womb may be more likely to perform poorly in school, Australian researchers report. In the study, these exposed kids lagged behind their peers on grade-level tests of reading, writing, math, spelling and grammar. By seventh grade, about 38 percent failed to meet test standards in at least one of these areas. The study authors said their paper is the first to examine academic results in children with neonatal abstinence syndrome (NAS) – when a fetus is exposed to drugs in the womb. It's a rapidly growing public health problem fueled by the global opioid epidemic. In the United States, it's estimated that an NAS infant is born every 25 minutes, the study authors said. Opioid painkillers such as morphine, Percocet (oxycodone/acetaminophen), OxyContin (oxycodone), Vicoprofen (hydrocodone/ibuprofen), and the illegal opioid ... Read more

Related support groups: Oxycodone, Percocet, OxyContin, Opiate Dependence, Morphine, Opiate Withdrawal, Heroin, Roxicodone, MS Contin, Drug Dependence, Endocet, Kadian, Delivery, Percocet 10/325, Vicoprofen, M O S, Roxicet, Acetaminophen/Oxycodone, Avinza, Embeda

Innovative Programs Help Addicts Get Off Opioids

Posted 22 Dec 2016 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, Dec. 21, 2016 – People trying to kick addiction to heroin or prescription painkillers often wait weeks or months before they can get into a treatment facility, putting them at continued risk for a fatal overdose. Now, two innovative programs attempt to get addicts the help they need as quickly as possible. Police in Gloucester, Mass., created an "Angel Program" that encourages opioid addicts to come to the department, with no threat of arrest, so officers can get them placed in local treatment programs immediately. Meanwhile, researchers in Vermont started prescribing the anti-addiction drug buprenorphine to people placed on a waitlist at a treatment clinic, to try to tide them over. Both programs reported promising results in the Dec. 21 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine. Gloucester police got about 95 percent of people who came to the department with a substance ... Read more

Related support groups: Suboxone, Oxycodone, Percocet, OxyContin, Fentanyl, Opiate Dependence, Opiate Withdrawal, Subutex, Heroin, Roxicodone, Drug Dependence, Butrans, Buprenorphine, Endocet, Duragesic, Percocet 10/325, Substance Abuse, Roxicet, Acetaminophen/Oxycodone, Fentanyl Transdermal

Drug Overdose Deaths Climb Dramatically in U.S.

Posted 20 Dec 2016 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Dec. 20, 2016 – Drug overdose deaths continue to surge in the United States, with most fatalities linked to the illicit use of prescription painkillers, new government statistics reveal. Drug overdose deaths increased 23 percent between 2010 and 2014, with more than 47,000 Americans dying in 2014, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) data released Tuesday shows. But updated numbers from the CDC also show that more than 52,000 people died from a drug overdose in 2015, and just over 33,000 of those deaths (63 percent) involved a prescription or illicit opioid. The CDC noted, in its national update released Dec. 16 in the Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report, that more than 300,000 Americans have lost their lives to an opioid overdose since 2000. Heroin continues to be the deadliest narcotic in the United States, killing nearly 11,000 people in 2014 – ... Read more

Related support groups: Suboxone, Oxycodone, Methadone, Percocet, OxyContin, Fentanyl, Opiate Dependence, Morphine, Opiate Withdrawal, Smoking, Heroin, Roxicodone, MS Contin, Drug Dependence, Endocet, Duragesic, Diskets, Kadian, Percocet 10/325, Substance Abuse

What You Need to Know When Prescribed an Opioid Painkiller

Posted 13 Dec 2016 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Dec. 12, 2016 – There are a number of questions you should ask if a doctor or other health care provider prescribes opioid painkillers such as Oxycontin, Vicodin, codeine and morphine, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration says. While approved to treat certain kinds of acute and chronic pain, opioids can have serious side effects, and the United States is in the mist of an opioid overuse epidemic. First, ask why you need the medication, is it right for you, and are there non-opioid options? If your health care provider thinks an opioid painkiller is the best choice, ask the doctor to prescribe the lowest dose and the smallest quantity. Find out when to call to follow-up with the health care provider on how well the opioid is working, as well as when and how to stop or taper off use of the drug, the FDA said in a news release. To reduce the risk of side effects, take the ... Read more

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

Opioids No Better Than Ibuprofen for Pain After Car Crash: Study

Posted 28 Nov 2016 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Nov. 28, 2016 – For treating persistent pain after a car crash, prescription opioid painkillers such as oxycodone (Oxycontin) are no more effective than nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAID) like ibuprofen, a new study finds. "You'd think there would be a wealth of studies comparing our 'go-to' pain meds, but there just aren't," said study lead author Dr. Francesca Beaudoin. She's an assistant professor of emergency medicine at Brown University's Warren Alpert School of Medicine and an emergency room doctor at Rhode Island Hospital. "Now that opioids are under fire, it's forcing us to ask: 'What is the best treatment, who is it best for and under what conditions?' " Beaudoin said in a university news release. "As an emergency physician, I prescribe these drugs all the time. Does what I am giving to people have any impact on the pain outcomes that matter to them?" she ... Read more

Related support groups: Pain, Oxycodone, Hydrocodone, Methadone, Percocet, Tramadol, OxyContin, Fentanyl, Morphine, Codeine, Opana, Ibuprofen, Subutex, Dilaudid, Breakthrough Pain, Opana ER, Advil, Roxicodone, MS Contin, Butrans

These Medicines Often Send Americans to ERs

Posted 22 Nov 2016 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Nov. 22, 2016 – An estimated one in 250 Americans lands in the hospital emergency department each year because of a medication-related reaction or problem, a new federal study finds. Among adults 65 and older, the rate is about one in 100, the study authors said. Remarkably, the medicines causing the most trouble haven't changed in a decade, the researchers noted. Blood thinners, diabetes medicines and antibiotics top the list. These drugs accounted for 47 percent of emergency department visits for adverse drug events in 2013 and 2014, according to the analysis. Among older adults, blood thinners, diabetes medicines and opioid painkillers are implicated in nearly 60 percent of emergency department visits for adverse drug events. "The same drugs are causing the most problems," said study co-author Dr. Daniel Budnitz. The study doesn't tease out what went wrong. The reasons ... Read more

Related support groups: Pain, Suboxone, Oxycodone, Diabetes, Type 2, Back Pain, Hydrocodone, Methadone, Percocet, Tramadol, OxyContin, Vicodin, Norco, Fentanyl, Morphine, Codeine, Lortab, Opana, Warfarin, Coumadin, Subutex

U.S. Surgeon General Declares War on Addiction

Posted 18 Nov 2016 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, Nov. 17, 2016 – America's response to alcohol and drug addiction demands a shift in thinking – away from moralizing and toward proven medical treatment instead, the U.S. Surgeon General said Thursday. For too long, addiction has been looked at as a character flaw or a moral failing, rather than as a chronic disease of the brain, Dr. Vivek Murthy said during a morning news conference. "We have 20.8 million people in America with substance abuse disorders," the Surgeon General noted. But only one in 10 is getting treatment, research shows. "That is unacceptable, we have to close that gap," Murthy said. Addiction to alcohol or drugs is not hopeless. "There's strong evidence that prevention and treatment work," Murthy said. Under this line of thinking, treatment of opioid disorders – a national crisis – is likely to include medications such as buprenorphine and methadone. ... Read more

Related support groups: Oxycodone, Hydrocodone, Percocet, OxyContin, Vicodin, Norco, Opiate Dependence, Lortab, Opiate Withdrawal, Smoking, Roxicodone, Drug Dependence, Alcohol Dependence, Alcohol Withdrawal, Endocet, Acetaminophen/Hydrocodone, Percocet 10/325, Vicoprofen, Substance Abuse, Alcoholism

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