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Toxic Reactions Incl Drug and Substance Abuse News

Drug OD Rate Now Higher in Rural U.S. Than Cities: CDC

Posted 1 day 12 hours ago by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, Oct. 20, 2017 – Drug overdose death rates in rural areas of the United States are now higher than in cities, a trend that worries federal health officials. In 2015, drug overdose was the leading cause of injury-related death in the United States – with 52,000 fatalities attributed to opioid painkillers, heroin and other potentially deadly drugs, researchers said in a new report. U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Director Dr. Brenda Fitzgerald said rising overdose death rates outside metropolitan areas warrant attention. "We need to understand why this is happening so that our work with states and communities can help stop illicit drug use and overdose deaths in America," Fitzgerald said in an agency news release. In 1999, drug overdose death rates were 6.4 per 100,000 in urban regions and 4 per 100,000 in rural areas. But the gap gradually disappeared. By 2015, ... Read more

Related support groups: Suboxone, Methadone, Opiate Dependence, Subutex, Contrave, Heroin, Drug Dependence, Butrans, Buprenorphine, Naltrexone, Diskets, Vivitrol, Substance Abuse, Methadose, Zubsolv, Embeda, Methadone Diskets, Bunavail, Buprenex, Revia

Hepatitis C Screening May Boost Opioid Treatment Success

Posted 1 day 12 hours 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

Self-Harm on the Rise Among Teen Girls

Posted 2 days 9 hours ago by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, Oct. 19, 2017 – Teen girls are much more likely to self-harm than boys, and the dangerous practice is on the rise. That's the conclusion of a new British study that also found a strong link between self-harm – practices such as cutting or burning oneself – and a higher risk of suicide. Researchers reviewed information from nearly 650 general practices in the United Kingdom. The records had data on almost 9,000 patients aged 10 to 19 who self-harmed between 2001 and 2014. The investigators compared those children to more than 170,000 kids who didn't self-harm, matched for age and gender. The rate of self-harm was about three times higher among girls than boys. The rate rose 68 percent among girls ages 13 to 16 from 2011 to 2014. Referrals to mental health services within 12 months of self-harming were 23 percent less likely for children in the poorest areas, even though the ... Read more

Related support groups: Depression, Major Depressive Disorder, Alcohol Dependence, Dysthymia, Substance Abuse, Poisoning, Alcoholism, Hangover, Toxic Reactions Incl Drug and Substance Abuse, Acute Alcohol Intoxication

2 Million Americans May Have Arsenic in Their Well Water

Posted 3 days ago by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, Oct. 18, 2017 – As many as 2 million Americans may be drinking well water that contains potentially dangerous amounts of arsenic, a new government study warns. The analysis, conducted by researchers from the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, measured arsenic levels in private wells across the United States. Study author Joseph Ayotte described the private well problem as "widespread." "We define 'high arsenic' to mean arsenic [levels] greater than 10 micrograms per liter," he said. That mirrors standards used when evaluating public wells, he noted. Ayotte is a supervisory hydrologist with USGS at the New England Water Science Center. According to the U.S. National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS), arsenic is an odorless, tasteless and colorless element. In addition to water, it is commonly found in food, ... Read more

Related support groups: Cancer, Toxic Reactions Incl Drug and Substance Abuse, Arsenic Poisoning, Arsenic Trioxide, Arsenic Poisoning - Severe, Trisenox, Arsenic Poisoning - Mild

Nearly a Third of College Kids Think ADHD Meds Boost Grades

Posted 5 days ago by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Oct. 16, 2017 – Many college students who abuse ADHD drugs mistakenly believe that doing so will lead to better grades, a new survey suggests. Past research has found that college students commonly misuse stimulant medications such as Ritalin and Adderall as "study aids." That's despite the fact that there is no evidence the drugs help kids who do not have attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). The new study said that roughly 29 percent of students at nine U.S. colleges thought that stimulant medications boost school performance. Many others – 38 percent – were "unsure." And that misperception was especially common among students who admitted to abusing the drugs. Just over 11 percent said they'd used stimulant medication for "non-medical" reasons in the past six months. And of that group, almost two-thirds believed the drugs would improve their grades. The findings ... Read more

Related support groups: Anxiety and Stress, Adderall, Vyvanse, Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), Concerta, Ritalin, Adderall XR, Drug Dependence, Methylphenidate, Amphetamine, Methylin, Daytrana, Substance Abuse, Amphetamine/Dextroamphetamine, Metadate CD, Ritalin LA, Methylin ER, Lisdexamfetamine, Toxic Reactions Incl Drug and Substance Abuse, Evekeo

When Should You Rush Your Toddler to the ER?

Posted 5 days ago by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Oct. 16, 2017 – Many American parents aren't sure when to rush their child to the emergency room, a new survey finds. "When young children experience urgent medical situations, parents have to make decisions about whether to administer first aid at home, call for advice or seek emergency care," said Dr. Gary Freed, from the University of Michigan. He is co-director of the C.S. Mott Children's Hospital Poll on Children's Health. "Our report suggests that some parents may be using the ER for common situations that could be handled at home," Freed said in a university news release. "Determining what is in fact an 'emergency' can be a confusing and nerve-wracking experience for parents who want to make the right decision." Researchers questioned nearly 400 parents with at least one child aged 5 or younger. They found only half would know what to do if their child was choking, 10 ... Read more

Related support groups: Poisoning, Toxic Reactions Incl Drug and Substance Abuse, Acetaminophen Overdose

Stroke Risk Factors Are Rising

Posted 10 days ago by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, Oct. 11, 2017 – While progress is being made in reducing the number of stroke deaths, it seems that more people who experience these brain attacks have significant stroke risk factors, a new study reveals. The rates of high blood pressure, diabetes, abnormal cholesterol, smoking and drug abuse have all been on the rise in stroke patients over recent years, the study authors said. The study included over 900,000 people hospitalized for stroke between 2004 and 2014. Each year, prevalence of high blood pressure went up by 1 percent, diabetes rose by 2 percent, high cholesterol went up by 7 percent, smoking increased by 5 percent, and drug abuse jumped 7 percent, the researchers found. "The risk of dying from a stroke has declined significantly, while at the same time the risk factors are increasing," said researcher Dr. Ralph Sacco. He's a professor of neurology at the ... Read more

Related support groups: High Blood Pressure, Diabetes, Type 2, Opiate Dependence, Hypertension, Smoking, Ischemic Stroke, High Cholesterol, Drug Dependence, Transient Ischemic Attack, Pre-Diabetes, Substance Abuse, Diabetes Mellitus, Ischemic Stroke - Prophylaxis, Toxic Reactions Incl Drug and Substance Abuse, Hypertensive Heart Disease

Health Tip: Recovering From Substance Abuse

Posted 10 days ago by Drugs.com

-- Recovery-oriented care aims to empower people with mental or substance-use disorders to manage their conditions. The U.S. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration defines recovery as a process of change through which people improve their health and wellness, live self-directed lives and strive to reach their full potential. The process includes four major components: Health – Overcoming or managing one's diseases or symptoms. An example would be abstaining from use of alcohol or illicit drugs. Home – Having a constant and safe place to live. Purpose – Finding meaningful things to do each day, such as a job, volunteer work or family caregiving. Community – Establishing relationships and social networks that provide support, friendship, stability, love and trust. Read more

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

Be 'Mindful' of the Hype

Posted 11 days ago by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Oct. 10, 2017 – "Mindfulness" is touted as a cure-all for many modern ills, from stress and pain to depression. But little to no scientific evidence backs up most of the health claims surrounding the practice, said Willoughby Britton, director of Brown University's clinical and affective neuroscience laboratory. There's not even an agreed-upon definition of mindfulness that researchers can use to test the concept's effectiveness, Britton said. "Meditation researchers are concerned the exaggerated claims of mindfulness benefits will mislead vulnerable people and keep them from receiving evidence-based treatment," Britton said. In a new paper, Britton and 14 other experts say it's time to replace the hype with serious scientific rigor. Mindfulness has become a billion-dollar industry. Countless practitioners and more than 1,500 smartphone apps promise to help people become calm ... Read more

Related support groups: Obesity, Sleep Disorders, Insomnia, Substance Abuse, Toxic Reactions Incl Drug and Substance Abuse

Medicare Could Do More to Stem Opioid Epidemic

Posted 11 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

Cigna Says No to OxyContin

Posted 15 days ago by Drugs.com

Most OxyContin prescriptions will no longer be covered in Cigna group health plans starting in January, the insurance giant announced. The move is an attempt to help stem the opioid epidemic that has spread across the United States, company officials said. "Our focus is on helping customers get the most value from their medications – this means obtaining effective pain relief while also guarding against opioid misuse," Cigna Chief Pharmacy Officer Jon Maesner said in a statement. Although OxyContin won't be an option for Cigna customers unless a doctor deems it "medically necessary," the company said it has signed a contract with the maker of another opioid, known as Xtampza ER. Xtampza is "an [OxyContin] equivalent with abuse-deterrent properties," the company said. "Xtampza ER's abuse-deterrent platform allows the product to maintain its extended-release profile even when cut, ... Read more

Related support groups: Oxycodone, Percocet, OxyContin, Opiate Dependence, Opiate Withdrawal, Roxicodone, Drug Dependence, Endocet, Percocet 10/325, Acetaminophen/Oxycodone, Roxicet, Percocet 5/325, OxyIR, Percocet 7.5/325, Toxic Reactions Incl Drug and Substance Abuse, Percodan, Oxyfast, Percocet 10/650, Aspirin/Oxycodone, Xtampza ER

1 in 5 Have Been Hit By a Medical Error, Survey Shows

Posted 18 days ago by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Oct. 3, 2017 – One-fifth of American adults have been at the receiving end of a medical error, a new survey finds. The nationwide poll included more than 2,500 adults. The survey also found that one in three people said another person whose care they were closely involved with had experienced a medical error. Most medical errors were associated with diagnosis and patient-provider communications. Outpatient settings were a common site of medical errors. On average, respondents who experienced a medical error identified at least seven different factors that caused the error. Nearly half of those who noted an error told medical staff or other workers at the health care facility about it. Most people feel that health care providers have the prime responsibility for patient safety. But survey participants also said that patients and their families have a role, too. Still, most ... Read more

Related support groups: Toxic Reactions Incl Drug and Substance Abuse

Apologies Go a Long Way When Medical Errors Occur

Posted 18 days ago by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Oct. 3, 2017 – Hospitals that take responsibility for medical mistakes aren't at increased risk for lawsuits or more expensive settlements, a new study finds. To come to that conclusion, researchers reviewed 989 medical mistakes that occurred at six hospitals in Massachusetts between 2013 and 2015. The hospitals were part of a program that informs patients about medical errors, apologizes for them, pledges to investigate and correct the problem, and offers compensation. Only 5 percent of the medical errors led to malpractice claims or lawsuits, according to the report. When the program led to compensation, the median payment was $75,000. In 2015, the median payment nationwide when plaintiffs won malpractice lawsuits was about $225,000. The study was published Oct. 2 in the journal Health Affairs. "Our findings suggest that communication-and-resolution programs will not lead to ... Read more

Related support groups: Prevention of Cardiovascular Disease, Cardiovascular Risk Reduction, Toxic Reactions Incl Drug and Substance Abuse

Heroin Taking Bigger Share of U.S. Opioid ODs

Posted 19 days ago 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

Rapid Test for Meth Abuse May Be Near

Posted 19 days ago by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Oct. 2, 2017 – Attempting to speed up drug detection, scientists from Korea say they have developed a portable, rapid urine test for amphetamines. The experimental test features a wireless sensor and smartphone app. It can detect amphetamines, or speed, in a drop of urine within seconds, its developers said. The prototype device is small enough to be worn as a bracelet, is highly sensitive with a low risk for false-positive results, and costs about $50 to produce, according to their proof-of-concept design. The report was published Sept. 28 in the journal Chem. "Conventional drug detection generally use techniques that require long operation time, sophisticated experimental procedures, and expensive equipment with well-trained professional operators," said co-senior author Joon Hak Oh. "Moreover, they are not usually portable." Oh heads an organic electronics laboratory at ... Read more

Related support groups: Drug Dependence, Methamphetamine, Substance Abuse, Desoxyn, Toxic Reactions Incl Drug and Substance Abuse, Desoxyn Gradumet

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