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Heroin is a very addictive chemical called diacetylmorphine. Heroin is a modified form of morphine, a highly abundant opium derived from the seedpods of the poppy plant.
Heroin-assisted treatments benefit some drug users

Heroin-assisted treatments benefit some drug users

Drug users who do not benefit from conventional treatments for heroin addiction should be able to access the drug through the health system, urges a Canadian expert in The BMJ today. [More]
ACA calls for 'conservative care first' approach to low-back pain

ACA calls for 'conservative care first' approach to low-back pain

The American Chiropractic Association, in response to recent research calling into question the efficacy of acetaminophen in the management of spinal pain, strongly encourages patients and healthcare providers to consider the benefits of a conservative approach to back pain. [More]
Many teens still ignorant of significant physical danger posed by legal drugs

Many teens still ignorant of significant physical danger posed by legal drugs

Legal drugs such as OxyContin now kill more people than heroin and cocaine combined. While awareness of the dangers of illegal drugs has increased, many teens are still ignorant of the significant physical danger posed by legally prescribed drugs, according to a new study in Journal of Public Policy & Marketing. [More]
Study finds that reformulated OxyContin forces some drug abusers to switch to heroin

Study finds that reformulated OxyContin forces some drug abusers to switch to heroin

A reformulation of OxyContin that makes it harder to abuse has curtailed the drug's illicit use. But some 25 percent of drug abusers entering rehab said they still abused the prescription painkiller despite package labeling that emphasizes its abuse-deterrent properties, new research indicates. [More]
Researchers develop robust screening method for routine measurement of drugs in exhaled breath

Researchers develop robust screening method for routine measurement of drugs in exhaled breath

Drug testing is most commonly performed using urine samples. The methodology and regulations for reliable urine testing are well developed and can be considered the current gold standard for drug testing. [More]
New healthcare law may threaten federally subsidized coverage for over 2.5 million Americans

New healthcare law may threaten federally subsidized coverage for over 2.5 million Americans

A new study shows that over 2.5 million Americans who have a serious mental health condition in 34 states will become uninsured in 2016, if the Supreme Court rolls back tax credit subsidies that currently make it affordable for those individuals to purchase coverage on federally-run health insurance marketplaces under the Affordable Care Act. [More]
Opioid withdrawal in Ontario newborns increases 15-fold

Opioid withdrawal in Ontario newborns increases 15-fold

The number of newborns suffering from opioid withdrawal increased 15-fold in Ontario over 20 years, according to research published today in CMAJ Open. [More]
Five researchers selected to receive 2015 Avant-Garde Award for HIV/AIDS Research

Five researchers selected to receive 2015 Avant-Garde Award for HIV/AIDS Research

With proposals ranging from innovative therapies to the development of unique organoid models of the brain, five scientists have been selected to receive the 2015 Avant-Garde Award for HIV/AIDS Research from the National Institute on Drug Abuse, part of the National Institutes of Health. The five scientists will each receive $500,000 per year for five years to support their research. [More]
Policymakers need to look beyond painkiller abuse to reduce opioid overdose deaths, say researchers

Policymakers need to look beyond painkiller abuse to reduce opioid overdose deaths, say researchers

According to researchers at Brandeis University, the University of North Florida and Johns Hopkins University, policymakers must look beyond painkiller abuse, also called non-medical use, in their efforts to reduce opioid overdose deaths. [More]
Study could lead to potential drug treatment for fighting addiction

Study could lead to potential drug treatment for fighting addiction

A research team led by the University of Colorado Boulder has discovered a mechanism in the brain that is key to making cocaine seem pleasurable, a finding that could lead to a drug treatment for fighting addiction. [More]
Trust for America's Health supports President's proposal to end sequestration

Trust for America's Health supports President's proposal to end sequestration

The following is a statement from Jeffrey Levi, PhD, executive director of the Trust for America's Health (TFAH) and chair of the Advisory Group on Prevention, Health Promotion, and Integrative and Public Health. [More]

Study findings could offer roadmap for preventing deaths from drug overdoses

Results from a new study show that participants in drug overdose education programs tend to be parents (mostly mothers) who provide financial support for their son/daughter, have daily contact with their loved one, have applied for court-mandated treatment and have witnessed an overdose. [More]
Older users of opioids more likely to become victim of homicide, shows study

Older users of opioids more likely to become victim of homicide, shows study

Older users of opioids such as heroin are 27 times more likely to become a victim of homicide than the general population, a University of Manchester study of almost 200,000 users has found. [More]
New experimental study shows immunotherapy can reduce acute effects of heroin

New experimental study shows immunotherapy can reduce acute effects of heroin

Immunotherapy could have a place in the treatment of substance abuse in the future. A specific antibody can reduce the acute effects of heroin, according to a new experimental study at the Norwegian Institute of Public Health. [More]
European countries implement ATOME project to study improved access to essential painkillers

European countries implement ATOME project to study improved access to essential painkillers

Governments in 12 European countries are to implement the recommendations of research into why more patients are not receiving essential painkillers. [More]
CET ‘feasible’ in schizophrenia patients with substance misuse

CET ‘feasible’ in schizophrenia patients with substance misuse

Patients with schizophrenia and comorbid substance abuse diagnoses are able to benefit from cognitive enhancement therapy, preliminary research suggests. [More]
Study finds link between contraband cigarette and illicit drug use among teens in Canada

Study finds link between contraband cigarette and illicit drug use among teens in Canada

A University of Alberta economics professor has discovered a link between contraband cigarette use and illicit drug use among Canadian teens. [More]
National survey shows decrease in alcohol, cigarette and illicit drug use among U.S. teens

National survey shows decrease in alcohol, cigarette and illicit drug use among U.S. teens

A national survey of students in U.S. middle schools and high schools shows some important improvements in levels of substance use. [More]

Heroin use impacts HIV disease progression

Researchers at Yale and Boston University and their Russian collaborators have found that occasional heroin use by HIV-positive patients may be particularly harmful to the immune system and worsens HIV disease, compared to persistent or no heroin use. [More]
Month-long residential program helps young adults stay drug-free

Month-long residential program helps young adults stay drug-free

Residential treatment may be an appropriate first-line option for young adults who are dependent on opioid drugs - including prescription painkillers and heroin - and may result in higher levels of abstinence than does the outpatient treatment that is currently the standard of care. [More]
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