Narcotic drugs have always been associated with addiction; however, narcotic
drugs remain the best agents to relieve pain. Pain management is the reason
people are most likely to seek medical attention. Physicians try to balance
their desire to elevate suffering against concerns that the patient in pain just
wants a drug prescription. The narcotics that are considered to have the
greatest addiction potential include codeine 60 mg, oxycodone, methadone,
hydromorphone, demerol (meperidine), fentanyl, and morphine. The World Health
Organization (WHO) suggested a progressive treatment of pain. For mild pain:
aspirin, acetaminophen, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs and adjuvants. For
moderate pain: mild opioids. For severe pain: traditional opioids. Acetaminophen
is not an effective drug and has toxic effects at dosages required for any
analgesic effects. NSAIDs are better drugs but also have toxic effects that
constrain their use.
Physicians remain constrained by problems of drug dependence and addiction
and are reluctant to prescribe narcotics or prescribe weak, inferior narcotics
such as codeine and demerol. Weintstein et al polled 386 physicians in Texas and
found that a significant number of physicians had prejudice against the use of
opioid analgesics, displayed lack of knowledge about pain and its treatment, and
had negative views about patients with chronic pain. They suggested that new
educational strategies are needed to improve pain treatment in medical practice.
Oxycontin and Hydrocodone
The narcotic, hydrocodone has a high
potential for abuse. Hydrocodone, as a narcotic cough medicine, is one of the
favorite drugs sought by recreational users when they visit emergency
Physician concerns are justified. Narcotic-dependent people routinely
solicit prescriptions from a number of physicians and become good at feigning
painful conditions. Every primary care physician will have patients who demand
prescriptions for pain relievers and other psychotropic drugs and will become
chronic users, unless the physician steadfastly resists their demands and limits
prescriptions to short term use. Prescribed narcotics are always available for
sale on the street. For example, about two million Americans have admitted taking OxyContin
(oxycodone) illegitimately. The US Drug Enforcement Administration reported that
it is one of the most abused prescription drugs.
The muscle relaxer, carisoprodol (Soma) is another favorite street drug
which contains a metabolite of meprobamate, an old tranquilizer. Taken with
alcohol, Soma produces stupor or "Soma coma." Tramadol (Ultram) is a pain
medication that can produce a mild euphoric state. Dextromethorphan is a cough
suppressant found in many cough syrups, which produces a euphoric state when
taken in large quantities and can produce visual hallucinations. People who take
opioid analgesics for many days will develop physical dependence and will suffer
withdrawal effects if the drug is discontinued suddenly. Symptoms of withdrawal
include drug cravings, muscle cramps, joint pains, anxiety, nausea and vomiting.
Withdrawal is most intense following IV heroin use and is relatively milder
after taking oral medications.
Street Market in Legal Drugs
Prescribed narcotics are always available for sale on the street. Most
originate with doctors who are lenient prescribers. Drug traffickers have lists
of lenient Doctors who write narcotic prescriptions on demand for a fee.
Prescribed narcotics are always available for sale on the street. For example,
about two million Americans have admitted taking OxyContin (oxycodone)
illegitimately. The US Drug Enforcement Administration reported that it is one
of the most abused prescription drugs. Another narcotic, hydrocodone also has a
high potential for abuse. Hydrocodone, as a narcotic cough medicine, is one of
the favorite drugs sought by recreational users when they visit emergency
departments. Both drugs act on the opioid mu receptor which blocks the
transmission of pain in the spinal cord. In the USA OxyContin is a $1.5 billion
per year product. A report in the New York times from rural Kentucky ( July
2004) provides a perspective on narcotic drug use: “Ever since prescription
painkillers like OxyContin became the drugs of choice among dealers and addicts
in Appalachia, the days of small-town pharmacists' dispensing medicines from
behind an ordinary counter have become a quaint memory. Now many pharmacies have
turned into virtual fortresses. Some have bars over the windows. The most
sought-after drugs are stored in vaults. The pharmacists often work behind
safety glass, and some have even armed themselves. Surveillance cameras and
alarm systems monitor every spot. Dan Smoot, chief detective for Operation
Unite, an anti-drug task force said that prescription drugs remained the top
problem for police agencies in the mountains. Mr. Smoot recently led the largest
drug raid in Kentucky history, arresting over 200 people on charges of buying or
selling prescription drugs on the black market.”
- You are viewing the Brain Mind Center at Alpha Online.
Understanding the human brain is essential to become a well-informed, modern
citizen. Stephen Gislason MD, the author of
the Human Brain, is a physician-writer who is good at making complex subjects more
understandable. This is a book with important ideas, so be prepared to read
and then keep the book as reference.
- Alpha Online is a Division of Environmed Research, founded in 1984 at
Vancouver, BC, Canada. Online Since 1995. Alpha Nutrition is a trademark
and a division of Environmed Research Inc.
Download The Human Brain as an eBook
All Alpha Education and Persona Digital books, eBooks and Starter packs are ordered online.
Prices are listed in Canadian Dollars.
Brain Rescue Starter Pack
US $ cost is lower
depending on the daily dollar exchange rate. Physical shipments by the Post
Office are available to all destinations in the USA and Canada.
We are located in Sechelt, close to Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. eMail:
This starter pack includes the Alpha Nutrition Program, the Human Brain in Health and Disease
and one 500 Gram jar of Alpha DMX. There are a host of clues that link the food supply to mysterious and threatening neurological
diseases. We suggest that a prudent person suffering early brain-dysfunction
symptoms would be wise to pursue vigorous, thorough diet revision at the
earliest opportunity. Because some brain dysfunction compromises judgment
learning and motivation, family members, friends and professional advisor often
have to initiate diet revision and provide the right direction and support.
Order Brain Rescue Starter Pack
Order Persona Digital Books
Click the Add to Cart buttons
on the left to begin your order for printed books from Alpha Online (mail delivery to US and
Download eBooks Click the Download button to order
eBooks (PDF file) for download. Click book title (center column) to read topics
from each book.
Further reading: Neuroscience Notes, Intelligence and
Learning, Language & Thinking
Persona Digital Books
is the publisher of The Human Brain, Neuroscience Notes, Intelligence & Learning
and related books. All books are available as eBooks for download (PDF files).