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One of Many Overdose Deaths

Tyler Macleod was a young man that was well-liked by everyone and had a full life ahead of him. Unfortunately, will never have the future he deserves thanks to an addiction to heroin that took his life.

Everyone wanted to be Tyler’s friend, he was fun loving and loved the beaches and surfing. During adolescence, Tyler started experiencing symptoms of depression and began smoking marijuana. His parents tried to help him by transferring him to a new school but that did not keep the addiction from growing.

After receiving a phone call from a school counselor that informed his parents that he was using harder drugs, Tyler’s parents took him to drug rehab program and made him attend narcotics anonymous meetings daily. This helped for a while but soon his parents started to find foil and needles which made them …

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Doctors Prescribing Opioids Facing Double Edged Sword

Though it may seem surprising to some, it turns out most doctors dealing with prescription dependent patients are at some level aware of their patient’s addiction problems and prescription abuse.

Ana Lembke, a California addiction psychiatrist, specifically cites an example of opioid prescriptions meant to address muscle pain being overused by a patient to the tune of 1,200 pills in one month. CURES, Controlled Substance Utilization Review and Evaluation System, was put in place in California to monitor patient prescriptions and deter these kinds of abuses. However, as Lembke explains, doctors often face a choice between being morally irresponsible in giving addicted patients opioid prescriptions and being medically irresponsible in not providing adequate treatment for a potentially real physical pain being suffered by the patient. 

The problem is further compounded by increased media attention on this growing problem and the …

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Heroin Overdose is Just the Tip of Southern California’s Drug Problem

This past Wednesday, Carlie Coulter, age 22, died of a heroin overdose. She had been struggling with addiction since the
age of 18. Her family is now joining with other parents out there to try to help end this surge of drug related deaths in younger people in Southern California.

Heroin is becoming an epidemic in the area, not just on the streets, but among middle and upper class youngsters too. While many kids start out with prescription drugs such as OxyContin, Xanax or Klonopin, heroin offers a much cheaper high.Smokeable heroin allows users to get high without having to deal with needles.

The LA County Sheriff’s office reports that there have been at least six heroin overdose deaths since August 2011. There is no word as to whether these were injectable or smokeable heroin though, or any other information …

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An Inside Look at Prescription Drug Abuse

The economic conditions over the past few years have caused a high level of financial and emotional stress for millions of people. In order to cope with this increased level of stress, many people have self medicated with alcohol and prescription drugs.

Although adult alcohol abuse has been a common problem in this country for a long time, the number of people abusing prescription drugs really started increasing in the last several years. In the state of California for example, prescription drug abuse has reached epidemic levels.

The fallout has included police raids involving hundreds of large illegal prescription drug operations. One particular raid that involved a medical clinic in west Los Angeles, resulted in the recovery of thousands of prescription pills and evidence of over twenty three million dollars of fraudulent sales.

Prevention (of the Addiction) is the Best

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Fentanyl and Suboxone – The Evolution of Drug Abuse and Addiction

A new and controversial detox drug utilized in major rehab centers today
is buprenorphine which is better known as Suboxone. Touted as the “new methadone,” this powerful, synthetic opiate is prescribed to patients with chronic pain and drug addiction problems.

Ironically, both Suboxone and methadone are also addictive, just as heroin and other medications like Vicodin and Oxycotin are.

Suboxone is expensive and extremely difficult to obtain from a physician. A person usually has to be a patient of a substance abuse specialist or a pain management doctor to get a prescription. The average cost
for a month’s prescription of Suboxone is approximately $200-$700. When used for detox purposes, gradual withdrawal of the drug is necessary to prevent negative side effects such as seizures, cramps, diarrhea, fever and chills, vomiting, and nausea. This sublingual narcotic was approved by the FDA …

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Pills to Heroin: An Increasingly Common but Deadly Path

Small towns across the U.S. are seeing an increase in heroin use. The cause is dwindling supplies of the prescription narcotic oxycodone.

Oxycodone, which is sold under brand names like Oxycontin, Oxyneo, Percocet, and Percodan, is a powerful synthetic opioid derived from the papaver somniferum, or opium poppy plant. While oxycodone is legitimately prescribed for moderate to severe pain, it is also sold on the black market as a recreational drug. Powerful and addictive, regular users of oxycodone can quickly become addicted. An opiate addict becomes physically ill within hours after their last dose, prompting them to seek out more drugs to avoid withdrawal.

With the rising costs of prescription drugs, users of oxycodone are turning to heroin to find a cheaper way to maintain their habits. Any drug of the opiate class can be substituted for one

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Mexican Drug Cartels Now Trafficking Prescription Painkillers

Mexican drug cartels have depended on sales of illicit drugs like cocaine, marijuana and heroin for their profits. According to federal authorities, an increasing number of Mexican drug traffickers are now dealing
in prescription drugs. These traffickers are forming “Pharma-Cartels” and focusing on selling highly addictive prescription painkillers like OxyContin and Vicodin to customers in the U.S.

The cartels are diverting prescription painkillers from hospitals, clinics and doctors’ offices in the U.S. and selling them on pharmacy websites and in pain clinics and pharmacies in Mexican border towns. Drugs that are sold by the cartels over the Internet are advertised on Twitter and with popup ads. Some cartels are
also creating counterfeit pills, often in unsanitary makeshift labs in rundown apartments.

NBC San Diego recently reported that the U.S. Attorney’s office has brought charges against more than 25 suspected prescription …

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Purdue Pharmas Marketing and the Roots of the OxyContin Epidemic

In the late 1990s, Purdue Pharma’s marketing campaign for OxyContin was the kick-off for the prescription drug industry’s massive promotion of narcotic painkillers for the treatment of chronic pain. One of Purdue’s marketing tools was a promotional video that showed how OxyContin had improved the lives of seven patients. The video was distributed directly to 15,000 doctors. Prior to the introduction of OxyContin, most doctors were reluctant to write prescriptions for narcotic drugs due to the risk of addiction and overdose. Despite Purdue Pharma’s hard-sell, there was little medical evidence that these drugs could be used to effectively treat pain over the long term without leading to addiction for some patients.

Purdue’s campaign could be termed a success in terms of profits for drug-manufacturers, with sales of prescription painkillers increasing by 400 percent between 1999 and 2010. According to …

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New Government Plan To Tackle Rx Abuse

An innovative new scheme, spearheaded by the government, will attempt to tackle the growing number of people misusing and abusing prescription drugs like OxyNEO. The new scheme will take extra measures to ensure that all data is accurately collected by not only pharmacies, but also doctors. Under this revamp of the patient data collection system, it is thought that a more efficient approach to the digitizing of patient data to national records will greatly improve doctor/patient relations. Overdoses from prescribed medication are now the number one cause of avoidable fatalities in the United States. These numbers even exceed those from accidents such car crashes, and illegal substance abuse. Prescription drug abuse is considered especially troubling as it is also the leading form of substance abuse among teens. According to The Partnership for a Drug Free America, teens are often …

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Prescription Opioid Analgesics: The New U.S. Drug Epidemic

According to the 2007 data released by the Center for Disease Control, prescription drug overdose resulted in approximately three deaths per hour. With nearly 27,000 such deaths that year, the CDC has appropriately classified the growing trend as an epidemic. Of course, in years since 2007, the prescription medication epidemic has really hit a fever pitch.

The main culprit is the prescription opioid analgesic. For centuries, opioids have been used to treat pain. Recent studies have routinely found them safe, if used according to the doctor’s orders. They have been especially successful in managing the pain of cancer victims and persons suffering from degenerative diseases. However, one of the trends feeding the epidemic is the growing use of these drugs to help manage chronic pain in non-cancer patients. This has paved the way for misuse; blamed in part on …

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