OxyContin: ‘A Rocket Ship to Heroin

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I just wanted to post a shout out to the Cape Cod Times which published an article with the most accurate title that describes the relationship between OxyContin and heroin I have ever read.

OxyContin: ‘A Rocket Ship to Heroin’

Click above to read the article. Some highlights:

OxyContin has become so widely abused that the addiction rate for the drug in Massachusetts increased by 950 percent over the past 10 years, according to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

“OxyContin is not just a gateway to heroin, it’s a rocket ship to heroin,” Tolman said.

More people have also been dying from overdosing on heroin and OxyContin. Between 2002 and 2007, 3,265 people in Massachusetts died of opiate-related overdoses, officials said. By comparison, Massachusetts lost 78 soldiers in the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq during that time.

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Massachusetts Government Battles the OxyContin Epidemic

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U.S. Congressman Bill Delahunt held a meeting earlier this month to address the related issues prescription drug abuse and heroin overdose.  Unless you are a first time visitor to our blog, then you will be familiar with our take on the connection between OxyContin and heroin overdose.

We’ve written at length about how the epidemic of heroin addiction and overdose is closely related to the abuse of prescription drugs like OxyContin.  The State of Massachusetts recently released a report that stated “The Commonwealth is in the midst of a serious and dangerous epidemic.” This same report pointed out that between 2002 and 2007, 78 citizens of Massachusetts lost their lives in Iraq and Afghanistan while 3,265 citizens died from drug related causes.

Representative Delahunt headed up a committee on April 12th to try and brainstorm solutions to this …

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Accidental Prescription Drug Overdoses on the Rise

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Accidental overdose of prescription drugs has become the second leading cause of death in the United States, according to a study in the recent issue of the American Journal of Preventive Medicine.

The study’s researchers found a 37 percent increase in accidental poisoning by opioids, sedatives and tranquilizers between 1999 and 2006. In comparison, accidental poisonings by drugs and other substances increased 21 percent during that time.

“People have seen the headlines related to Heath Ledger, Michael Jackson, Anna Nicole Smith and they think that’s tragic but maybe contained to Hollywood,” Dr. Jeffrey H. Coben of West Virginia University School of Medicine in Morgantown told Reuters Health. “But the fact of the matter is we are seeing, across the country, very significant increases in serious overdoses associated with these prescription drugs.”

The prescription drugs most likely to be …

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The OxyContinuum by Interventionist Steven Bruno

It is time for the companies who manufacture Oxycontin and  other opiates to take responsibility for the unintended effects these drugs are having. Heavy opiates, prescribed to ease pain of surgery or accidents are taking a huge toll on our children – our sisters and brothers, mothers and fathers.

Every day we can read a news story about the tragic effects of these highly addictive painkillers.  The FDA is supposed to protect us, but the fact is that these drugs kill approximately 200,000 people a year in the U.S. alone, more than four times our total losses in the Vietnam War..

So what can we do about it?

We can start by collecting the facts. Call every drug treatment center in your area and ask what percentage of their clients are addicted to painkillers like OxyContin.  If you work in …

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The “New Silk Road” of Heroin Smuggling

Kazakhstan is a country known mainly to Americans as the home of Borat, the farcical character perpetrated on the world by comedian Sasha Baron Cohen. However, Kazakhstan also sits on the “New Silk Road” of heroin smuggling that connects Asia and Europe.

Afghanistan supplies and estimated 90% of Europe’s heroin (and 75% of the world’s heroin).  Global political and economical factors have created a “perfect storm” of supply and demand for heroin between the manufacturers in the east and the consumers in the west (read about the Global Heroin Manufacturing Empire).

The New Silk Road of heroin smuggling is through the poor republics of the former Soviet Union.  The poverty in this region makes it rife with willing participants and the under trained and poortly equipped police forces can’t compete with the multi billion dollar industry.

The city of Almaty …

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Teen Heroin Use Rising in Los Angeles Suburbs
Glendale Police Seeing an Influx of Heroin

Teen Heroin Use Rising in Los Angeles Suburbs

According to an article written by the LA Times, the heroin use in Glendale and La Crescenta is rising as LA based gangs make their way into these suburbs and educate and give away the drug to users who are “at risk”of addiction and overdose.

Per the Glendale Police, all drug related offenses that were investigated in the Crescenta Valley during the month of January were attributed to heroin.

This comes at a time when a variety of factors is leading the nation’s youths and young adults into a dangerous love affair with opiates and other drugs like ecstasy, inhalants, meth.   The factors are as disparate as prescription drug legislation and the geopolitical climate that affects Afghanistan (the source of much of the world’s heroin).  The global economy and the United State’s proximity to Mexico also have an influence on …

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Promising Canadian Legislation to Limit OxyContin Prescriptions

According to the Winnipeg Free Press, the Canadian Province of Manitoba is implementing legislation that restricts the prescribing of OxyContin to cancer patients or those who are not eligible for a substitute drug.

Of course, the new restrictions come as a result of the rampant phenomenon of opiate addiction that has plagued North America in recent years.  The Manitoba health care system cannot handle the surge in addicted patients requiring methadone treatment and the instances of heroin overdose are rising.

The reality of addiction to narcotic medications is that people who have become physically and mentally dependent on a drug like OxyContin will more  likely seek out an alternative drug (like illicit heroin) than treatment.  Still, the legislation that reduces OxyContin prescriptions will undoubtedly cause a reduction in opiate addiction and overdose in the long run.…

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