Alarming Rise in Prescription Drug Overdoses

The U.S. is currently facing an epidemic of deaths caused by accidental drug overdoses.  According to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), approximately 75 people die every day from drug overdoses.  More than 90% of all poisoning deaths are attributed to unintentional drug overdoses that occur during drug abuse and due to taking too much of a prescribed medication.

The number of deaths from drug overdoses more than doubled between 1999 and 2007, from about 12,000 to more than 28,000 per year.   In 2007, fatal drug overdoses were second only to motor vehicle accidents as the leading cause of accidental death in the general population.  For those aged 35 to 54, they caused more deaths than car accidents.

Most of these deaths are caused by opioid pain medications (oxycodone, methadone and hydrocodone), followed by cocaine and …

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Glen Alexander Story Epilogue – The Video

Read Glen’s Story Part I -The Early Years

Read Glen’s Story Part II – The Accident and the Medication

Read Glen’s Story Part III – “When I Found Him”

The bravery of Glen’s Mother and her willingness to share her story with others in the hopes that she may help those who are suffering and in danger has allowed our website to bring a very moving tale of a special person – Glen Alexander.

Here is a video that will help you get to know Glen throughout the years of his life.  If you are concerned about someone who may be abusing prescription (or any) drugs, please seek help immediately.  If you are concerned about the welfare of someone who is under the influence of drugs dial 911 immediately.

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Glen Alexander – A Life Ended Too Soon Part III

Read Part I of Glen Alexander’s Story

Read Part II of Glen Alexander’s Story

“When I Found Him”

It was about 6:30 AM.  I was so glad Glen had stopped moaning and hoped he was feeling better.  I picked up his glass and mug that he had kicked over and brought them to the kitchen.  I went back in his room to check on him.  I noticed he had removed all his clothing and was now laying sideways, on his stomach, across his bed.  When I came in this time, I looked at his back and realized he was not breathing.  I stood there paralyzed thinking, Oh God please no, please no!  Please say it isn’t true.  I finally reached out and touch him and he was already cold and hard to the touch.  I flipped out and ran to …

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Glen Alexander – A Life Ended Too Soon Part II

Read Part I of the story here.

On October 25, 2008 Glen received a settlement from the insurance company.  He put $50,000 in the bank to use for a down payment on a house.  He could not buy a house until his Social Security Disability was approved.  He had to show some kind of income and was unable to work.

On August 3, 2009: Glen filled out a “Pain Questionnaire” for Social Security.  He states:  His pain is located in his right leg, ankle, and foot.  It feels like it is broken.  His leg hurts and makes him suddenly depressed.   It hurts 24/7.  The pain never goes away.  It last forever.  Rest relieves his pain overnight.  He smokes medical marijuana daily to help mostly with the anxiety.  He stops activities all the time because of pain.  He can no longer …

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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 …

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New U.S. Drug Strategy Targets Prescription Drug Abuse Epidemic

This week the National Drug Control Policy branch of the White House announced a new national drug policy that targets the current epidemic of prescription drug abuse.  It is the first time the federal government has announced a comprehensive strategy for dealing with the non-medical use of prescription painkillers.  According to Assistant Secretary for Health Howard Koh, “Abuse of prescription drugs, especially opioids, represents an alarming public health crisis.”

Drug czar Gil Kerlikowske unveiled the new plan, which aims to reduce the non-medical use of powerful opioid painkillers like oxycodone by 15 percent over the next 5 years.  Kerlikowske’s press release described the magnitude of the prescription drug problem as exceeding the black tar heroin and crack cocaine epidemics of the 1970s and 1980s.

The plan will focus on four main areas: education for physicians, prescription tracking, drug disposal and …

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Purdue Pharma is seeking 6 Year Old Kids For Oxycontin Study

 

Purdue Pharma is looking for six year-old kids to take OxyContin

Makers of OxyContin Purdue Pharma are currently recruiting participants for a clinical study in the treatment of moderate and severe pain.

This are the eligibility standards that Purdue Pharma submitted on March of 2011:

Ages Eligible for Study:       6 Years to 16 Years
Genders Eligible for Study:       Both
Accepts Healthy Volunteers:       No
Criteria
Inclusion Criteria include:
•    Male and female patients aged 6 to 16 years, inclusive, who are expected to require ongoing around-the-clock opioid treatment equivalent to at least 20-mg daily dose of oxycodone for at least 2 weeks for management of moderate to severe (based on the investigator’s judgment) malignant or nonmalignant pain.
•    Patients must be opioid tolerant, ie, have been treated with opioids for at least the 5 consecutive days prior to dosing and …

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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 …

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The Facts about Prescription Drug Addiction

Prescription drugs are currently one of the most abused categories of drugs in America, surpassed only by marijuana.  They are even more widely abused than street drugs like methamphetamine, cocaine and heroin.  Part of the attraction of prescription drugs is that they are relatively easy to obtain from doctors or prescription drug dealers.  They can be found in the medicine cabinets of many households, easily accessible to family members and visitors.  As a result, a growing number of people are abusing prescription drugs and becoming addicted.

The National Institutes of Health has reported that an estimated 20 percent of people in the U.S. have used prescription drugs for non-medical reasons.  The most highly addictive prescription drugs are narcotic painkillers (OxyContin, Vicodin, Percocet), tranquilizers (Valium, Xanax, Ativan) and stimulants (Adderall, Ritalin).

Prescription steroids, which increase muscle mass and may be prescribed …

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Florida’s Oxy Express

Florida has become ground zero for the prescription drug epidemic in America.  In communities like Fort Lauderdale, once a popular tourist destination and yachting center, drug dealers have set up shop in strip mall “pain clinics.”  Instead of selling crack or heroin, these dealers are pushing powerful prescription drugs like oxycodone, a narcotic painkiller that is marketed under the names OxyContin, Roxicodone and Oxyfast.  The pain clinics, referred to as “pill mills” by law enforcement officials, make it easy for addicts to obtain powerful prescription narcotics.

National Public Radio recently reported that doctors in Florida write 10 times as many prescriptions for oxycodone as all the other U.S. states combined.

Florida pain clinics operated by disreputable physicians attract people from all along the eastern seaboard.  A typical visit to one of these clinics consists of a quick exam and a …

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