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It's Often Family to the Rescue During Opioid ODs

Posted 5 days ago by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, May 17, 2017 – The tragic scenario has become far too familiar: A mother, a father or a sibling discovers the lifeless body of a loved one who has overdosed on opioids. But a new study suggests that family members may be able to play a lifesaving role in some of these instances, mostly because of increased access to an antidote that can reverse an otherwise deadly ending. Sometimes, even the victims can rescue themselves from a potentially fatal overdose. Researchers in Massachusetts looked at people who underwent training in using the antidote – known as naloxone (Narcan, Evzio) – and found that family members used it in about 20 percent of slightly over 4,000 rescue attempts. Almost all rescue attempts were successful. "Individuals who use opioids are likely to use naloxone on both friends and family" who overdose, explained study author Dr. Sarah Bagley, an assistant ... Read more

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

High Rates of Hepatitis C in Pregnancy Mirror Opioid Epidemic: CDC

Posted 11 days ago by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, May 11, 2017 – Chalk up another potential consequence of the U.S. opioid epidemic: The prevalence of hepatitis C infections among pregnant women nearly doubled between 2009 and 2014, U.S. health officials report. Hepatitis C – which is caused most often by injection drug use – rose 89 percent nationwide among pregnant women. Increases were most notable in West Virginia and rural counties in Tennessee, areas hard-hit by the heroin and prescription painkiller epidemic, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported. Nationwide, 35 infants a day were exposed to the contagious liver disease, on average, study authors said. "We have seen a dramatic increase in opioid use in pregnancy and in the number of infants having drug withdrawal," said report author Dr. Stephen Patrick, of Vanderbilt University Medical Center in Nashville. "Taken together, this suggests that ... Read more

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

Health Highlights: May 11, 2017

Posted 11 days ago by Drugs.com

Here are some of the latest health and medical news developments, compiled by the editors of HealthDay: Senate Confirms Scott Gottlieb as FDA Chief The U.S. Senate on Tuesday confirmed Scott Gottlieb as the new commissioner of the Food and Drug Administration. The 57-42 vote was largely along party lines, with Democrats criticizing Gottlieb's financial links with health care and pharmaceutical companies and his past opposition to FDA measures to reduce the risks posed by some products, the Washington Post reported. The 44-year-old Gottlieb, a physician and venture capitalist, was as a deputy FDA commissioner and a high-ranking official at the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services during the George W. Bush administration. He takes charge of the FDA as it faces pressure from Republicans to further accelerate its drug-approval process and to be more aggressive role in fighting the ... Read more

Related support groups: Opiate Dependence, Opiate Withdrawal, Drug Dependence, Substance Abuse, Toxic Reactions Incl Drug and Substance Abuse

Babies Born Addicted to Opioids Often Struggle With Learning

Posted 19 days ago by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, May 3, 2017 – Babies exposed to opioid painkillers in the womb are more likely to need special education services by the time they reach school age, a new U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention study found. Many infants born with an addiction to opioids – a condition called neonatal abstinence syndrome (NAS) – wind up lagging behind other children in school, said Dr. Mary-Margaret Fill. She's a CDC officer assigned to the Tennessee Department of Health. Fill and her colleagues found that, compared with kids without the syndrome, Tennessee children born with NAS were: 44 percent more likely to be referred for evaluation of potential developmental delays. 36 percent more likely to meet their state's criteria for educational disability. 37 percent more likely to receive help with educational and developmental difficulties. "These children were more likely to have ... Read more

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

Opioid-Related Deaths Might Be Underestimated: CDC

Posted 25 Apr 2017 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, April 25, 2017 – America's prescription drug abuse epidemic may be even more deadly than expected, a new report from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention suggests. Some opioid-related deaths may be missed when people die from pneumonia and other infectious diseases spurred on by drug abuse. Their death certificates may only list the infection as the cause of their demise, explained CDC field officer Victoria Hall. That means a number of drug-related deaths are not being counted, since surveillance systems mainly track overdose deaths. "It does seem like it is almost an iceberg of an epidemic," Hall said. "We already know that it's bad, and while my research can't speak to what percent we are underestimating, we know we are missing some cases." More than half of a series of drug-related unexplained deaths in Minnesota between 2006 and 2015 listed pneumonia as the ... Read more

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Opioid Abusers at Higher Death Risk When Addiction Specialists Not Part of Care

Posted 21 Apr 2017 by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, April 21, 2017 – Opioid addicts who get their medical care in settings such as primary care offices and hospitals, rather than addiction centers, are 10 times more likely to die than patients without substance abuse disorders, a new study finds. Opioids include powerful prescription painkillers such as oxycodone (OxyContin, Percocet), hydrocodone (Vicodin), as well as illegal drugs such as heroin. University of California, Los Angeles researchers studied data from nearly 2,600 adults who were diagnosed with opioid addiction between 2006 and 2014 and who received health care at a major university hospital. Not all were receiving treatment for their opioid addiction. By the end of the period, 465 (18 percent) of the patients had died. Based on how long each person was in the study – four years on average – the researchers estimated that death rate was more than twice that of ... Read more

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

Many Opioid Addictions Surface After Surgery, Study Finds

Posted 12 Apr 2017 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, April 12, 2017 – Some surgery patients prescribed opioids for post-operative pain relief may face a high risk for developing a long-term opioid addiction, new research warns. The analysis tracked a half-year of opioid use among more than 36,000 surgery patients. None had taken opioids before their surgical procedure. "We found that 5 to 6 percent of patients not using opioids prior to surgery continued to fill prescriptions for opioids long after what would be considered normal surgical recovery," said study author Dr. Chad Brummett. He is director of the division of pain research at the University of Michigan Medical School. "Moreover, the rates of new chronic use did not differ between patients having major and minor surgeries, suggesting that patients continue to use these pain medications for something other than simply pain from surgery," he added. The risk was highest ... Read more

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

Senator Probes Opioid Makers' Role in U.S. Drug Abuse Epidemic

Posted 29 Mar 2017 by Drugs.com

A U.S. senator wants information from the five top makers of opioid painkiller drugs in order to assess their role in the nation's opioid epidemic. Sen. Claire McCaskill wants to determine whether the five companies – Purdue Pharma, Janssen Pharmaceuticals, Insys Therapeutics, Mylan, and Depomed – have contributed to overuse and overprescribing of opioids, the Washington Post reported. Since 2000, 180,000 people in the U.S. have died of prescription opioid overdoses and tens of thousands have died of heroin and fentanyl overdoses, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. On Tuesday, McCaskill sent a letter to the five companies asking them for opioid sales and marketing materials, any research they may have conducted on the addictive properties of their drugs, and information on compliance with legal settlements, the Post reported. "This epidemic is the direct ... Read more

Related support groups: Fentanyl, Opiate Dependence, Opiate Withdrawal, Heroin, Drug Dependence, Duragesic, Substance Abuse, Actiq, Fentora, Duragesic-100, Subsys, Toxic Reactions Incl Drug and Substance Abuse, Duragesic-25, Substance Abuse - Cocaine, Fentanyl Transdermal, Duragesic-50, Fentanyl/Ropivacaine, Duragesic-12, Ionsys, Droperidol/Fentanyl

Heroin Epidemic Expands Its Grip on America

Posted 29 Mar 2017 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, March 29, 2017 – Heroin use in the United States jumped fivefold over a decade, and young, white males are the epidemic's most likely victims, a new study finds. One addiction specialist blamed the lax use of prescription opioid painkillers – narcotics such as Oxycontin, Percocet and Vicodin – for the surge in heroin use. "A nation awash with prescription opioids has led to a large increase in addiction, overdose deaths and transition to heroin-fentanyl [a powerful synthetic opioid]," said Bertha Madras, a professor of psychobiology at Harvard Medical School. She wrote an editorial that accompanied the study. The issue is so pressing that President Donald Trump plans to announce the formation of a commission to investigate the opioid epidemic in the United States on Wednesday. New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie will chair the commission. The Trump administration also named ... Read more

Related support groups: Percocet, OxyContin, Vicodin, Opiate Dependence, Opiate Withdrawal, Heroin, Drug Dependence, Substance Abuse, Toxic Reactions Incl Drug and Substance Abuse

Fewer U.S. Kids Overdosing on Opioids

Posted 20 Mar 2017 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, March 20, 2017 – The number of U.S. kids who overdose on prescription painkillers each year may be declining – but the incidents remain a major public health problem, new research says. Since 2009, U.S. poison control centers have seen fewer calls about children and teenagers who've ingested prescription opioids, researchers found. Often, those incidents involved young children who'd gotten hold of an adult's medication. In other cases, it was a teenager who intentionally abused the drug, or used it to self-harm. The fact that the incidents may be waning is "good news," researchers said. But, they stress, the issue is not going away. "We really have a major problem in this country [with opioid abuse]," said Dr. Marcel Casavant, one of the researchers on the study. "And it's trickling down to our kids." And in certain ways, the study found, things have gotten worse: Among ... Read more

Related support groups: Oxycodone, Hydrocodone, Percocet, OxyContin, Vicodin, Norco, Opiate Dependence, Lortab, Opiate Withdrawal, Roxicodone, Drug Dependence, Endocet, Acetaminophen/Hydrocodone, Percocet 10/325, Vicoprofen, Substance Abuse, Acetaminophen/Oxycodone, Hydromet, Roxicet, Tussionex Pennkinetic

Opioid Dependence Can Start in Just a Few Days

Posted 17 Mar 2017 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, March 16, 2017 – Doctors who limit the supply of opioids they prescribe to three days or less may help patients avoid the dangers of dependence and addiction, a new study suggests. Among patients without cancer, a single day's supply of a narcotic painkiller can result in 6 percent of patients being on an opioid a year later, the researchers said. The odds of long-term opioid use increased most sharply in the first days of therapy, particularly after five days of taking the drugs. The rate of long-term opioid use increased to about 13 percent for patients who first took the drugs for eight days or more, according to the report. "Awareness among prescribers, pharmacists and persons managing pharmacy benefits that authorization of a second opioid prescription doubles the risk for opioid use one year later might deter overprescribing of opioids," said senior researcher Martin ... Read more

Related support groups: Oxycodone, Hydrocodone, Percocet, OxyContin, Vicodin, Norco, Opiate Dependence, Lortab, Opiate Withdrawal, Roxicodone, Drug Dependence, Endocet, Acetaminophen/Hydrocodone, Percocet 10/325, Vicoprofen, Acetaminophen/Oxycodone, Hydromet, Roxicet, Tussionex Pennkinetic, Lorcet 10/650

7 in 10 U.S. Workplaces Hit by Opioid Abuse: Survey

Posted 10 Mar 2017 by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, March 10, 2017 – Prescription drug abuse has seeped into the American workplace, with 70 percent of businesses saying it affects their workers, a new survey reveals. The National Safety Council report also found that while 71 percent of employers believe that abuse of opioid prescription painkillers is a disease that requires treatment, 65 percent also consider it a justifiable reason to fire a worker. "Employers must understand that the most dangerously misused drug today may be sitting in employees' medicine cabinets," said Deborah Hersman, president and CEO of the safety council. "Even when they are taken as prescribed, prescription drugs and opioids can impair workers and create hazards on the job. We hope these findings prompt employers to take the lead on this emerging issue so that workplaces can be as safe as possible," she added in a safety council news release. But ... Read more

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

Longer Addiction Treatment Is Better, Study Confirms

Posted 5 Mar 2017 by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, March 3, 2017 – The longer patients receive treatment for addiction, the greater their chances of success, a new study finds. The study included 72 people, with an average age of 30 years. The participants were being treated for a variety of addictions, including alcohol and drugs such as opioids, amphetamines and benzodiazepines. The only significant factor in treatment success was the length of treatment. After one year, the treatment success rate was about 55 percent for those who underwent a standard 30-day treatment program. But the success rate was about 84 percent for those in treatment programs that lasted more than 30 days, the investigators found. The findings are important because most government and private health insurance programs only reimburse patients for 30 days of addiction treatment, said study leader Dr. Akikur Mohammad, of the University of Southern ... Read more

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

Many Opioid Addicts in Treatment Take Narcotics on the Side

Posted 24 Feb 2017 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, Feb. 23, 2017 – Opioid addicts who undergo "medication-assisted treatment" are often using other narcotics before long, a new study cautions. Doctors frequently give addicts buprenorphine, a low-dose opioid, to minimize withdrawal symptoms while they try to get off opiates like oxycodone (Oxycontin) or heroin. The drug produces a weaker effect than those deadlier drugs. But researchers from Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health checked pharmacy records for 38,000 new buprenorphine patients in 11 states and found cause for concern. Forty-three percent of addiction patients filled a prescription for a full-strength opioid like oxycodone while undergoing treatment, which was typically three months. And 67 percent did so in the year after treatment ended, the researchers found. "Policymakers may believe that people treated for opioid addiction are cured, but people with ... Read more

Related support groups: Suboxone, Oxycodone, Percocet, OxyContin, Opiate Dependence, Opiate Withdrawal, Subutex, Roxicodone, Butrans, Buprenorphine, Endocet, Percocet 10/325, Substance Abuse, Acetaminophen/Oxycodone, Roxicet, Percocet 5/325, Zubsolv, OxyIR, Opiate Adjunct, Buprenex

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

Posted 20 Feb 2017 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

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