HOME >> BIOLOGY >> NEWS
U.S. In The Midst Of A Heroin Epidemic, But Many Overdose Deaths Can Be Prevented

The number of heroin overdoses is increasing across the U.S. at an alarming rate, but many of the related deaths are preventable, according to a new report. With proper diagnosis and treatment that begins close to an hour after an overdose, a majority of patients should survive, says Karl Sporer, M.D., UC San Francisco assistant professor of medicine and author of the analysis, which appears in the April 6 issue of Annals of Internal Medicine.

He also emphasizes that overdose preventive measures like methadone maintenance, in which heroin users receive a synthetic narcotic drug to help treat their addiction, have proved effective, and increasing the availability of this type of program could reduce the number of deaths.

A specialist in emergency medicine who treats patients at the UCSF-affiliated San Francisco General Hospital Medical Center, Sporer began researching the medical literature a year ago for all current information on acute heroin overdoses when he found no comprehensive update was available.

The Annals article covers the pharmacology of heroin, incidence of fatal overdoses, diagnosis, treatment, complications, and prevention programs. "One surprise was the documentation of the dramatic activity of heroin in the body compared to morphine and other opiates," he says. "Heroin is more soluble in the fat cells so it crosses the blood-brain barrier within 15-20 seconds, rapidly achieving a high level in the brain and central nervous system, which accounts for both the 'rush' experienced by users and the toxicity."

Heroin produces its effects by acting on key receptors in the central nervous system that are linked to a slowed breathing rate, feelings of euphoria, and physical dependence on the drug, he adds.

In the U.S., heroin-related emergency department visits have doubled from 33,900 in 1990 to 70,500 in 1996. Of persons who inject heroin, the average annual death rate is two percent.

The clinical criteria for diagnosi
'"/>

Contact: Corinna Kaarlela
ckaarlela@pubaff.ucsf.edu
415-476-3804
University of California - San Francisco
6-Apr-1999


Page: 1 2 3

Related biology news :

1. Heroin users mystery a hope for back pain sufferers
2. Deaths of Zoo Elephants Explained -- New Virus Identified
3. 40 Percent Of Deaths Are Environmental
4. Fungus Suspect In Frog Deaths
5. USGS Scientists Implicate Exotic Parasite In Wisconsin Lake Bird Deaths
6. Termites Attraction To Small Amounts Of Carbon Dioxide Lures Pests To Their Deaths
7. Cell Suicide Prevented By Survival Signals
8. Relapses Prevented In Mouse Model Of Multiple Sclerosis: Research Aimed At Treating Relapses In Human MS

Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:


(Date:6/14/2017)... (NYSE: IBM ) is introducing several innovative partner startups ... collaboration between startups and global businesses, taking place in ... nine startups will showcase the solutions they have built with ... France is one of the ... percent increase in the number of startups created between 2012 ...
(Date:5/16/2017)... 16, 2017   Bridge Patient Portal , ... MD EMR Systems , an electronic medical ... GE, have established a partnership to build an ... the GE Centricity™ products, including Centricity Practice Solution ... These new integrations will allow healthcare delivery ...
(Date:4/19/2017)... New York , April 19, 2017 ... competitive, as its vendor landscape is marked by the ... the market is however held by five major players ... Safran. Together these companies accounted for nearly 61% of ... of the leading companies in the global military biometrics ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:10/12/2017)... ... October 12, 2017 , ... ... platform specifically designed for life science researchers to analyze and interpret datasets, ... Franklin, who made a major contribution to the discovery of the double-helix ...
(Date:10/11/2017)... ... ... Personal eye wash is a basic first aid supply for any work environment, but most ... you rinse first if a dangerous substance enters both eyes? It’s one less decision, and ... unique dual eye piece. , “Whether its dirt and debris, or an acid or alkali, ...
(Date:10/11/2017)... , Oct. 11, 2017  VMS BioMarketing, a leading ... a nationwide oncology Clinical Nurse Educator (CNE) network, which will ... need for communication among health care professionals to enhance the ... nurses, office staff, and other health care professionals to help ... breast cancer. ...
(Date:10/11/2017)... ... October 11, 2017 , ... ... implantation and pregnancy rates in frozen and fresh in vitro fertilization (IVF) ... and maternal age to IVF success. , After comparing the results from the ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
Cached News: