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Thread: Heroin Overdose Epidemic - what is your perspective?

  1. #11
    We see more crack and ice here more than anything, but heroin use is rising. Mainly because the street prices for oxy's have gotten so high.

  2. #12
    Site Supporter Nephrology's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TAZ View Post
    Their doc should be helping them not just filling in RX's.
    As someone who has seen both sides of this, it's a lot trickier than it sounds. For example, when I was in college I fractured both bones of my left forearm playing soccer. Required pretty significant orthopedic surgery. Obviously I ended up with a hefty amount of narcotics to deal with the pain, but after week 8 or so it became really unclear where the line was between wanting and needing the pain control. I ended up getting mildly addicted to the stuff by the end, and definitely had a few days of lightweight withdrawal symptoms.

    That was a best case scenario, too. As a medical student, I have seen patients come in with really awful, crippling pain that will probably never full go away. One guy I saw got hit by a car and had chronic spine issues, multiple vertebral fusions, terrible sciatica and other peripheral neuropathies - so bad that he cannot consistently control his bladder or bowels. He will be in pain for the rest of his life.There are obviously some physicians who accidentally or even willfully abuse their Rx pads, but the FDA has been cracking down hard on writing for narcotics and that clearly hasn't made a change in our nation's heroin problem...

  3. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by Suvorov View Post
    Where does most US bound heroin originate?

    I'd wager the mountains of Mexico. Chinese immigrants brought poppies to Mexico in the last century and started the proto-drug trade. Mexicans forced them out of the market, took it, and ran with it into maturity and what we have now. The Sinaloan highlands are one of the best places in the world to grow poppies.

  4. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nephrology View Post
    As someone who has seen both sides of this, it's a lot trickier than it sounds. For example, when I was in college I fractured both bones of my left forearm playing soccer. Required pretty significant orthopedic surgery. Obviously I ended up with a hefty amount of narcotics to deal with the pain, but after week 8 or so it became really unclear where the line was between wanting and needing the pain control. I ended up getting mildly addicted to the stuff by the end, and definitely had a few days of lightweight withdrawal symptoms.
    I suspect you had physiologic dependence, which is not addiction. I don't like to parse words, but those are important distinctions in this discussion.

    Of note, the CDC and others have given guidelines for the treatment of chronic pain. One poster was right above, increased cost of oxy-C on street is driving abusers to heroin. (From my understanding.....)

    E
    Quote Originally Posted by Nephrology View Post
    That was a best case scenario, too. As a medical student, I have seen patients come in with really awful, crippling pain that will probably never full go away. One guy I saw got hit by a car and had chronic spine issues, multiple vertebral fusions, terrible sciatica and other peripheral neuropathies - so bad that he cannot consistently control his bladder or bowels. He will be in pain for the rest of his life.There are obviously some physicians who accidentally or even willfully abuse their Rx pads, but the FDA has been cracking down hard on writing for narcotics and that clearly hasn't made a change in our nation's heroin problem...
    Last edited by Tom_Jones; 06-24-2016 at 12:54 PM. Reason: fixed quote

  5. #15
    Site Supporter DocGKR's Avatar
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  6. #16
    My brother died last year of a heroin overdose. He got into the wrong crowd and fell into doing drugs. He always struggled with anxiety and depression and multiple different prescription drugs didn't work and I guess heroin filled that void. Unfortunate truth is a majority of accidental overdoses happen when addicts relapse. He had been clean for several months and relapsed, unfortunately it was fatal. I used to be of the opinion that it was drug users own fault but I have had a couple friends die now and also my brother from heroin. I wish none of them would of ever tried it but they did and it was insane how fast they fell into the drugs web. Idk who to blame but we eventually have to hold everyone from the top down responsible, including the pharmaceutical companies pushing opiates as pain relievers in our country. It is insane to me that we push opiates but ban thc, fucking insane.

  7. #17
    Site Supporter JCS's Avatar
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    Two words: pain pills. It's an epidemic. Once they get addicted it spirals into heroin.


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  8. #18
    Connoisseur of cheap 1911 Sidheshooter's Avatar
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    Looks like a really solid read.

    @breakingtime: really sorry to hear. I've known a number of people in the arts who died via OD, but nobody that close. Hard to watch, because everyone knows it's just a matter of time.

  9. #19
    Quote Originally Posted by tanner View Post
    When I started in the mid 90's it was almost all crack cocaine. Hardly ever see it anymore, however now a days we come across people booting up heroin in parking lots almost daily.

    A LEO friend of mine lost his 20 year old son to heroin. All American kid, football star in high school. Shoulder surgery led to pill problem which led to the heroin. All within 20 months.

    My opinion as to the change? Opioid prescriptions. People are abusing the shit out of that shit.

    One of my coworkers went for neck surgery (some kind of fusion like Peyton Manning got) and he refused the meds outright just because he was scared he would have a problem.
    This is the same experience for me almost to the letter.

    We are seeing a ton of heroin ODs and I made a collar last month. Got two ounces and a stolen M&P 9mm off the guy. No sleuthing to it though: mad woman pinch. She ratted him out after finding out he had another gal(s).

    Anyway, never been around the stuff and coke and crack is what I have had the most job related exposure to. Looked at the small baggies and thought "Pff, that's hardly any weight at all."

    Then I was told the street price and how many "hits" those little baggies were.

    Large Hispanic population here so I am sure that has something to do with it. I have heard the term "Mexican brown" and such and have been told it is cut with Fentenyal or however you spell that stuff.

    Huge problem here.

  10. #20
    To TAZ, firefighterguy, et al. Be careful when you say "Doctors should...." I will be the very first to admit we have a terrible problem with Drs. in general way overprescribing. HOWEVER, in certain cases (ahem), pain medications, properly dosed, CAN be the miracle drugs they were intended to be. When a person is in that situation, those meds are the difference between living and withdrawing from life. Another caution: learn the difference between physical dependence and addiction. ANYONE on opiods for even a short period of time becomes dependent. Addiction develops when, instead of going to a properly educated physician, people try to get more on their own, any way they can - Dr. and pharmacy shopping, etc.

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