Making Oxycontin Harder to Abuse Led to Heroin OD’s

Have you ever wondered how heroin became such a prominent drug in the past few years? In 2010, Purdue Pharma, the makers of Oxycontin, were under a lot of pressure from various stakeholders. The popular drug, used for anything from pain for an acute injury to long-term chronic pain like cancer, had proven more addictive than they anticipated. By the 2000’s, it was clear that something had gone awry. People were crushing pills and snorting or shooting them up. So they decided to make Oxycontin more difficult to abuse by reformulating the medicine. By making the pills difficult to crush and more extended-release, people wouldn’t be able to abuse them. While this was a logical step to take, especially from the drug manufacturer’s perspective, the damage had already been done for many people. Thousands were already misusing the pill, and most of them were already exhibiting signs of a substance abuse disorder. Changing the way that the pills worked resulted in painful withdrawal and most likely even overdoses as…

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Is Kratom an Opioid? The FDA Says Yes

The Food and Drug Administration put out new warnings about kratom, saying that the drug is best classified as a substance with “opioid properties” and linking it to 44 deaths. Previously, the DEA took steps to outlaw the drug altogether but halted their actions as Kratom advocates led campaigns against the agency involving petitions and phone calls. Kratom has become popular among people with opioid use disorder trying to get clean from heroin and other potent, addictive drugs. People with chronic pain, depression, and a myriad of other diseases. Often, sellers of Kratom market the drug in capsule, powder, and tea form. People claim it helps ease the symptoms of a wealth of diseases. While these benefits sound great, there are many people in the addiction community that believe that replacing opioids with Kratom is a dangerous and unsustainable practice. For years, people in Southeast Asia similarly used Kratom – as a substitute for opioid drugs and to ward off symptoms of opiate withdrawal. However, once a person has…

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Massachusetts Bill Takes Aim At Opiate Abuse Prevention In Teens

The Massachusetts State Senate passed a bill last week aimed at combating opiate-related substance abuse problems before they even begin, especially for at-risk teens. "The Senate unanimously passed the second bill to address the opioid epidemic," state Sen. Kathleen O’Connor Ives, D-Newburyport, told The Daily News of Newburyport. "The prior bill focused on expanding treatment options and went into effect this week. This bill is focused on prevention and intervention in an effort to curb the serious health crisis." According to recent statistics from the state, unintentional deaths from opiate overdoses have increased 90% in the state of Massachusetts within the past 12 years. In Massachusetts, like many states in the US, a growing heroin overdoes have been claiming lives in epidemic proportions. The bill takes aim at the origins of opiate addiction, which is increasingly a result of addiction o powerful prescription drugs such as oxycontin. Senate Bill 2020 focuses on alternatives to the powerful narcotic, and includes an emphasis on responsible pain management, expanded manufacturer drug take-back…

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Is OxyContin Still King?

There are growing signs around the country that the abuse of OxyContin is diminishing. The drug is being bypassed during pharmacy robberies in favor of Opana, methadone and other narcotic drugs, and some hospital emergency rooms are reporting a decrease in OxyContin overdoses. According to Forbes, the Journal of Pain and other publications, the introduction of a new tamper-resistant form of OxyContin in 2010 seems to be responsible for a decrease in abuse of the drug. Drug addicts previously crushed OxyContin pills to circumvent the drugs time-release mechanism and experience the full impact of the drug in one rush. Instead of allowing drug abusers to crush the pill for snorting or injection, the new OxyContin turns into a gummy mush when tampered with. Unfortunately, the reformulation of OxyContin does not appear to be leading to an overall drop in drug abuse. In the past decade, OxyContin became so popular as a drug of abuse in rural communities that it was nicknamed "hillbilly heroin." This nickname has unfortunately proved to…

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The Seth Foundation – Teenage Heroin Advocacy

We haven't given proper coverage to the powerful website/advocacy group that was started by the bereaved family of Seth Norcutt. Website: http://www.thesethfoundation.org Seth's story is a 'must read'  because it is written in a very compelling and moving manner - go straight to that page here.  Seth was like many of those that contact us, he struggled with addiction after experimenting recreationally and getting hooked.  Seth was from the San Diego, California area. Seth ended up dying of a heroin overdose, but as it says in the story: Seth first started with simple over-the-counter medications like soma and vicodin and progressed to oxycontin. Why not, at $5 a pill, and readily available at school and from his friends, they were easy. No mess, nothing to hide, and the "Narc's" at school would never know. That was less than two years ago The family, after suffering the greatest of losses, made the decision to turn their experience into a beacon of hope for those that may still be saved. We…

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Glen Alexander – A Life Ended Too Soon Part I

Glen Tyson Alexander February 17, 1987 ~ July 2, 2010 Glen always said, He didn't have a purpose in life.  He did.  He does. Glen was born in Whittier, CA on February 17, 1987.  He was the youngest of six children (2 brothers and 3 sisters).   He wanted to be born feet first, but instead they did an emergency c-section.  He was the third one of my children to be diagnosed as extremely ADHD (attention deficit hyperactivity disorder) and was started on medication in second grade.  By eighth grade he didn't want to take meds anymore.  He told me, "I know they make me behave better, but I don't like the way they make me feel".  He always dealt with anxiety and depression and was diagnosed bipolar as a young adult. Whatever his problems were, they didn't keep his family and friends from loving him. He had a unforgettable smile, a very funny sense of humor, and a way of living life to the fullest.  He had his own…

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Heroin Use is Rising and Fueled by OxyContin

Heroin Use on the Rise       Like clothing styles, the popularity of some illegal drugs goes in and out of fashion.  Heroin, which saw a surge of popularity in the 1960s and 1970s, was eclipsed by Ecstasy and cocaine in the decades that followed.  Now heroin use is once again on the rise. A recent article in the Chicago Sun-Times reported that heroin use in the suburbs of Chicago increased by 46 percent between 2008 and 2009.  Further evidence was reported in an Associate Press survey of 36 states which found that heroin deaths rose 20 percent from 2006 to 2008. Increased Availability of Heroin The U.S. Department of Justice attributes the rise in heroin abuse  in part to the increased availability of the drug.  Its National Drug Threat Assessment for 2010 reports that heroin is widely available in parts America and that availability is increasing in many other areas.  As a result, the price of the drug is decreasing and the number of heroin-related overdoses and…

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