Monthly Archives: February 2016

Drug abuse and Drug addiction requires proper treatment


Abuse of drugs and narcotics can occur  every where. And become more severe citing of all ages. Drug trafficking occurs in the family, at work and school, and in the community. Below describes the handling of drug abuse in the US, but can be applied anywhere. Remember that narcotics and other illegal drugs can damage the generations to come, and is a threat to all countries

Drug addiction is a complex disorder that can involve virtually every aspect of an individual’s functioning—in the family, at work and school, and in the community.

Because of addiction’s complexity and pervasive consequences, drug addiction treatment typically must involve many components. Some of those components focus directly on the individual’s drug use; others, like employment training, focus on restoring the addicted individual to productive membership in the family and society (See diagram “Components of Comprehensive Drug Abuse Treatment”), enabling him or her to experience the rewards associated with abstinence.

Treatment for drug abuse and addiction is delivered in many different settings using a variety of behavioral and pharmacological approaches. In the United States, more than 14,500 specialized drug treatment facilities provide counseling, behavioral therapy, medication, case management, and other types of services to persons with substance use disorders.

Along with specialized drug treatment facilities, drug abuse and addiction are treated in physicians’ offices and mental health clinics by a variety of providers, including counselors, physicians, psychiatrists, psychologists, nurses, and social workers. Treatment is delivered in outpatient, inpatient, and residential settings. Although specific treatment approaches often are associated with particular treatment settings, a variety of therapeutic interventions or services can be included in any given setting.

Because drug abuse and addiction are major public health problems, a large portion of drug treatment is funded by local, State, and Federal governments. Private and employer-subsidized health plans also may provide coverage for treatment of addiction and its medical consequences. Unfortunately, managed care has resulted in shorter average stays, while a historical lack of or insufficient coverage for substance abuse treatment has curtailed the number of operational programs. The recent passage of parity for insurance coverage of mental health and substance abuse problems will hopefully improve this state of affairs. Health Care Reform (i.e., the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010, “ACA”) also stands to increase the demand for drug abuse treatment services and presents an opportunity to study how innovations in service delivery, organization, and financing can improve access to and use of them.

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Differences dose of sleeping pills and the effects caused


This article may be long time ago, but hopefully still be helpful to the reader about the use of sleeping pills. Food and Drug Administration has evaluated the use of sleeping pills in order to determine the extent of the impact of the use of sleeping pills for the customer, and here are the results. Blood tests uncovered a gender gap: Men metabolized the drug, Intermezzo, faster than women. Ultimately the F.D.A. approved a 3.5 milligram pill for men, and a 1.75 milligram pill for women.

The active ingredient in Intermezzo, zolpidem, is used in many other sleeping aids, including Ambien. But it wasn’t until earlier this month that the F.D.A. reduced doses of Ambien for women by half.

Sleeping pills are hardly the only medications that may have unexpected, even dangerous, effects in women. Studies have shown that women respond differently than men to many drugs, from aspirin to anesthesia. Researchers are only beginning to understand the scope of the issue, but many believe that as a result, women experience a disproportionate share of adverse, often more severe, side effects.

“This is not just about Ambien — that’s just the tip of the iceberg,” said Dr. Janine Clayton, director for the Office of Research on Women’s Health at the National Institutes of Health. “There are a lot of sex differences for a lot of drugs, some of which are well known and some that are not well recognized.”

Until 1993, women of childbearing age were routinely excluded from trials of new drugs. When the F.D.A. lifted the ban that year, agency researchers noted that because landmark studies on aspirin in heart disease and stroke had not included women, the scientific community was left “with doubts about whether aspirin was, in fact, effective in women for these indications.”

Because so many drugs were tested mostly or exclusively in men, scientists may know little of their effects on women until they reach the market. A Government Accountability Office study found that 8 of 10 drugs removed from the market from 1997 through 2000 posed greater health risks to women.

For example, Seldane, an antihistamine, and the gastrointestinal drug Propulsid both triggered a potentially fatal heart arrhythmia more often in women than in men. Many drugs still on the market cause this arrhythmia more often in women, including antibiotics, antipsychotics, anti-malarial drugs and cholesterol-lowering drugs, Dr. Clayton said. Women also tend to use more medications than men.

The sex differences cut both ways. Some drugs, like the high blood pressure drug Verapamil and the antibiotic erythromycin, appear to be more effective in women. On the other hand, women tend to wake up from anesthesia faster than men and are more likely to experience side effects from anesthetic drugs, according to the Society for Women’s Health Research.

Women also react differently to alcohol, tobacco and cocaine, studies have found.

It’s not just because women tend to be smaller than men. Women metabolize drugs differently because they have a higher percentage of body fat and experience hormonal fluctuations and the monthly menstrual cycle. “Some drugs are more water-based and like to hang out in the blood, and some like to hang out in the fat tissue,” said Wesley Lindsey, assistant professor of pharmacy practice at Auburn University, who is a co-author of a paper on sex-based differences in drug activity.

“If the drug is lipophilic” — attracted to fat cells — “it will move into those tissues and hang around for longer,” Dr. Lindsey added. “The body won’t clear it as quickly, and you’ll see effects longer.”

There are also sex differences in liver metabolism, kidney function and certain gastric enzymes. Oral contraceptives, menopause and post-menopausal hormone treatment further complicate the picture. Some studies suggest, for example, that when estrogen levels are low, women may need higher doses of drugs called angiotensin receptor blockers to lower blood pressure, because they have higher levels of proteins that cause the blood vessels to constrict, said Kathryn Sandberg, director of the Center for the Study of Sex Differences in Health, Aging and Disease at Georgetown.

Many researchers say data on these sex differences must be gathered at the very beginning of a drug’s development — even before trials on human subjects begin.

“The path to a new drug starts with the basic science — you study an animal model of the disease, and that’s where you discover a drug target,” Dr. Sandberg said. “But 90 percent of researchers are still studying male animal models of the disease.”

There have been improvements. In an interview, Dr. Robert Temple, with the Center for Drug Evaluation and Research at the F.D.A., said the agency’s new guidelines in 1993 called for studies of sex differences at the earliest stages of drug development, as well as for analysis of clinical trial data by sex.

He said early research on an irritable bowel syndrome drug, alosetron (Lotronex), suggested it would not be effective in men. As a result, only women were included in clinical trials, and it was approved only for women. (Its use is restricted now because of serious side effects.)

But some scientists say drug metabolism studies with only 10 or 15 subjects are too small to pick up sex differences. Even though more women participate in clinical trials than in the past, they are still underrepresented in trials for heart and kidney disease, according to one recent analysis, and even in cancer trials.

“The big problem is we’re not quite sure how much difference this makes,” Dr. Lindsey said. “We just don’t have a good handle on it.”


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Why and How to Identify Medication


Medical Author: Omudhome Ogbru, PharmD
Medical and Pharmacy Editor:Jay W. Marks, MD
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Pharmacists and other health care professionals are diligent about ensuring that patients receive the correct medication. However, they are human, and once in a while they make mistakes. The doctor may prescribe the wrong dose or the wrong medication. Pharmacy staff may misinterpret the prescription or the wrong medication may be dispensed. There are several checks and balances to minimize medication errors, but sometimes the checks and balances fail. Medication errors can cause serious consequences.

What should you, the prudent consumer do to protect yourself? You should make sure that you have the correct medication. Before the Internet age, pill identification was accomplished by calling a pharmacy or using pill identification books at the local library or bookstore. The Internet has made it possible for anyone to use pill identifiers (pill finder), such as the Rxlist Pill Identifier, to ensure that they have the correct medication. You can identify drugs by imprint, color, shape, and brand or generic name. If you do not find a match, you should call your pharmacist. Some generic drugs are manufactured by several manufacturers, and pill identification databases may not have images of all the generic versions.

For pill identifiers to be valuable, you have to know the medication and strength you should have received. Therefore, start by understanding your condition and the medication and dose your doctor has prescribed for you. Using pill identifiers and knowing what medications your doctor has prescribed will prevent you from taking the wrong medication. Pharmacists are no longer the last line of defense against medication errors; consumers are.

Find a picture of your pill using the RxList Pill Identifier Tool. We’ve also provided Pill Identifier examples of commonly abused drugs and popular medications.

Below is a list of commonly searched medications, visit find and read patient information on this drug, see pictures of the different pills prescribed, understand the potential side effects, how to take the medication, and what to do if you miss a dose.

Ultram (tramadol)
Xanax (alprazolam)
Percocet (acetaminophen and oxycodone)
Vicodin (acetaminophen and hydrocodone)
Amoxil (amoxicillin)
Prinivil (lisinopril)
Accutane (isotretinoin)
Deltasone (prednisone)
Percocet (oxycodone)
Neurontin (gabapentin)
Adderall (amphetamine and dextroamphetamine)
Ambien (zolpidem)
Glucophage (metformin)
Valium (diazepam)
Ativan (lorazepam)

REFERENCE: U.S. Food and Drug Administration