Six Compelling Reasons to Avoid Xanax Abuse

-+*Xanax and other drugs in this same class (benzodiazepines) have long been popular drugs of abuse. Those seeking to achieve the high of heroin by abusing painkillers found that mixing opioids like Vicodin, Lortab, Percocet or OxyContin with a benzodiazepine intensified the high of the painkillers and gave them a similar euphoric effect. And so was born drug combinations dubbed the “Las Vegas Cocktail” (benzos and opiates) and the “Houston Cocktail” (benzos, opiates and the muscle relaxant Soma). But with each drug added to this combination, it became more deadly. All three drugs in the Houston Cocktail suppress a person’s…

Continue reading

Fear of Legal Repercussions Prevents Many Addicts from Seeking Help

-+*News reports from California since the enactment of Proposition 47 in the November 2014 elections have brought to light an interesting relationship between drug rehab treatment and the legal consequences — or lack thereof — of living as a drug addict. In last year’s elections, the voters of California approved Prop 47, a measure which reduces the punishment for most drug crimes in that state. Provided that it is a “non-serious and nonviolent” drug crime, the offense has in most cases been reduced from a felony to a misdemeanor.

Continue reading

Community Events Being Held in Observance of National Drug Facts Week

-+*When it was first launched in 2010, National Drug Facts Week was observed by people across the United States, but it was at that time limited to 92 events scattered throughout the country. Now, five years later, the annual event has ballooned in scope and size, to the point where it has spread far and wide and in 2015 it was observed at a total of 1,557 events nationwide, an average of more than 30 per state. The event was held this year from January 26th through February 1st, and as in every year it was sponsored by the National…

Continue reading

Shire Pharmaceuticals Settles False Marketing Lawsuit for Adderall

-+*In September, Shire Pharmaceuticals, the developer and marketer of Adderall, settled a lawsuit claiming that they falsely marketed this drug. The lawsuit, brought by a former executive of the company, stated that Shire had made marketing claims about this drug intended to treat problems controlling one’s attention (referred to as Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder by doctors and psychiatrists) that were not supported by clinical evidence. For example, the lawsuit states that Shire claimed Adderall XR (extended release) was superior to drugs from other manufacturers treating the same condition when there was no such evidence on hand. Also that Adderall XR…

Continue reading

Thousands of Tons of Drugs Accepted on Drug Take-Back Days

-+*In September 2014, the Drug Enforcement Administration held its last Drug Take-Back Day. These events were started four years ago as a way to remove harmful, abusable and addictive medications from households around the country. Now, the DEA has established alternate outlets that will be able to accept these drugs and send them off to be destroyed so no more Drug Take-Back Days are needed. By survey, the majority of people who abuse prescription drugs get them from friends and family. By removing these drugs from households, they will never be able to cause a person to overdose. They will…

Continue reading

Epidemic of Opiate Abuse and Addiction

-+*The 2013 National Survey on Drug Use and Health has been released. Study this very long and detailed report and you will see that for some drugs, the numbers of Americans using them have gone down. Not so for heroin. The graph below shows the numbers of heroin users among those 12 and older. You can see how much the numbers have gone up since 2003. This report just takes you through 2012. Some of heroin use numbers in 2013 were up again.

Continue reading

Opioid Overdose Deaths – Are They from Heroin or Painkillers?

-+*Surveys show that teens and young adults abuse prescription drugs because they think they are safer than street drugs. If that impression were actually true, then it would seem that the majority of opiate overdose deaths would come from heroin. A new report shows that prescription opiates are killing more people than heroin. Many people get started abusing these drugs after they are prescribed by a doctor. With many drugs that end up being abused, the first thing that happens is that a patient develops a tolerance to the initial dose. As a tolerance is built up, it takes more…

Continue reading

New Federal Restrictions for Prescription Painkillers

-+*Until fairly recently, you couldn’t get a prescription for opiate painkillers unless you were on your deathbed or in the midst of cancer treatment. These medications were reserved for patients suffering from severe pain, and in many cases only for those with conditions that were determined to be beyond hope of a recovery. Drugs like Vicodin, Percocet and OxyContin are simply too addictive to take any chances with.

Continue reading

Will New Form of OxyContin Really Reduce Abuse?

-+*There’s a new painkiller that’s just been approved by our Food and Drug Administration. It’s called Targiniq ER – ER means Extended Release. It breaks down slowly in your body and provides lengthy pain relief. Targiniq is a new form of OxyContin and is made by Purdue Pharma, the same company that has always made OxyContin. What makes this pill different is that is contains another ingredient, naloxone. Naloxone blocks the effects of the opiate, making it non-euphoric if it is abused. This is the same substance that has started being distributed to first responders, like police, so they can…

Continue reading

The Right Legislation Can Help Reduce Drug Deaths

-+*There’s no one solution to drug abuse and addiction. Solving this problem in our society will take many different actions, as wrote in a post last week. This week I came across some information on how the right legislation can help in the effort to reduce the number of people who lose their lives to overdoses of drugs. It was in a story about a law change in Florida. Florida was notorious for having “pill mills” – businesses that had a doctor on the premises who would write you a prescription for painkillers or other drugs without asking questions. Until…

Continue reading