Addictions

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Okay, those lovable folks at Purdue Pharmaceutical decided to claim that Oxycontin, one of the favorite drugs at least of the street addicts I have seen and treated at an addiction center, is less “addictive” and less “abusable” than similar drugs.

Read more on Can’t They Sell Enough Oxycontin?…

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There is something very funny going on with substance abuse.  There is less of it among teens. Less since — it has been suggested — teenagers are increasingly occupied by the amusing complexities of cell phones. Read more on Teens Favor Phones Over Drugs?​…

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It takes a high-profile celebrity death — the most recent example is Prince — to highlight problems with legally-prescribed medications such as opioids.

Pain is a horrible thing, and those who suffer any level of pain from mild to extreme are deserving of relief.  A doctor is trained to give relief and is trained to do so safely and responsibly. Read more on Doctors Have Been Brainwashed By Pain Medicine Guidelines…

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Prince’s death was less original than his music. When Prince died of a self-administered dose of Fentanyl, he was far from the first celebrity to succumb to the use of addictive prescription drugs, and far from the first to succumb to the most dangerous of legal pharmaceutical opioids. Fame has long conferred a sense of entitlement.  The rich and famous who are powerful enough to have things they want have wanted freedom from both physical and emotional discomfort.  The list of them is long.  Their scandals nourish their admirers, often helping them feel superior to their idols. The list is long. The best news is that at least some, like Jamie Lee Curtis CITED HERE, have managed to vanquish addiction and continue with their lives. I applaud them, for I believe their public admissions inspire many.

Read more on Prince’s Death, Unlike His Music, Was All Too Familiar…

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I heard it long ago, when I was early in my training, at some big international psychopharmacology meeting so I reproduce it here. “What people really want is an on-off switch.” Most people seem to get through life pushing the envelope only minimally.  A few cups of coffee in the morning helps promote “alertness.” A drink or two with the guys after work helps to “wind down” on the way home. Neither of these decisions is harmless. Although there are indeed some beneficial compounds in some forms of alcohol, I have come to believe that civilization has taken a poor turn in validating its use for a very long time.

Read more on Addictive Drugs and Questions They Raise…

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She asked me to help with her weight problem. At 25 years old, she could not have been more than 25 pounds overweight.

“I need a pill to make me stop eating lasagna,” she told me.

I went into my maternal mode.  “Oh no, my dear, that is not a really good thing to do.”  I explained patiently that if she were hungry enough for her hunger to wake her at 6:30 in the morning and propel her to the preparation and consumption of microwave lasagna, she was probably hypoglycemic and she needed enough protein snacks in the evening to maintain her blood sugar in the morning. Read more on A Pill To Make Me Stop Eating Lasagna…

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My family wanted me to see “Fiddler on the Roof: because it celebrated the “shtetl” — the little Russian village like the one where my “Bobie,” my grandmother of blessed memory, lived before she emigrated to the United States. I did not see it until it reached our local movie theater.

There was one line in that musical that burned upon my personal soul more than any other.  It is from perhaps the most famous song from that production, “If I were a Rich Man.”  Tevye, the poor little old milkman is daydreaming about what his life would be like if he were a wealthy man. Read more on When The World Encourages You To Gain Weight…

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I never smoked.  In my family, it was simply not an option.  My grandmother of blessed memory used to stand at the front door and kick out anybody who opened a box of cigarettes on the concrete stairs coming up to the front door, let alone anyone who actually looked as if they were or would smoke.

My father of blessed memory swore once that when he tried to bring home a buddy from Harvard who was smoking and appeared poorly dressed; my grandmother kicked him out at the door. Read more on Everybody Knows Smoking Is Bad — So Why Do Some Still Do It?…

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I have had a lot of trouble with the idea of criminalization of drug addiction for a very long time.

I am only one of a lot of folks who say “addiction is a real disease.”  People feel every bit as sick as people with other diseases, sometimes more.

The patients are certainly able to die every bit as dead. Read more on Babies Born Addicted…

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In my previous entry to this blog, I talked about heroin overdoses and how people might be rescued – even if no doctors or EMTs are around.

Due to the timeliness, I mentioned the latest celebrity fatality, Philip Seymour Hoffman.  I am usually asked for my take on these things when a high-profile person dies because of drugs – whether legal prescription or illegal street drugs.

I hate doing this – mainly because it is a sad and depressing topic.  And yet, I do this not to capitalize on the notoriety of the victim, but with the intent of teaching the public about the dangers, possible solutions and new developments in treatment and education. Read more on Death From Drugs, Philip Seymour Hoffman and Staying Alive…

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