Data shows flood of opioids across US, many of them generics

The maker of OxyContin has been cast as the chief villain in the nation’s opioid crisis. But newly released government figures suggest Purdue Pharma had plenty of help in flooding the U.S. with billions of pills even as overdose deaths were accelerating. Records kept by the federal Drug Enforcement Administration show that 76 billion oxycodone and hydrocodone pills—the vast majority […]

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Galcanezumab can cut frequency of cluster headache attacks

Galcanezumab can reduce the frequency of episodic cluster headache attacks, according to a study published in the July 11 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine. Peter J. Goadsby, M.D., Ph.D., from King’s College London, and colleagues enrolled patients who had at least one attack every other day, a total of at least four attacks, or no more than […]

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Kratom herbal supplement used to treat addiction and pain found unsafe by researchers

The herb kratom is increasingly being used to manage pain and treat opioid addiction, but it’s not safe to use as an herbal supplement, according to new research led by faculty at Binghamton University, State University of New York. William Eggleston, clinical assistant professor of pharmacy practice at Binghamton University, had been seeing more and more patients presenting with toxicity […]

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They’re cutting opioid prescriptions by stopping pain before it starts

Doctors today are reducing their patients’ need for strong opioid medications after surgery by pre-treating patients with other pain relievers before they even enter the operating room. While opioids relieve patients’ pain and suffering, between 8% and 12% of those who take these drugs develop an opioid use disorder. At Keck Medicine of USC, health professionals are part of a […]

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Suit: Generic drug makers used code to fix price increases

A lawsuit says representatives of some of the nation’s largest generic drug manufacturers used code words to collude with competitors to divvy up market share and coordinate price increases. The code came in emails included in the lawsuit filed last month by attorneys general from more than 40 states. The 510-page federal lawsuit filed in Connecticut was released in full […]

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Antidepressants can lead to reductions in behavioral and neural responses to pain empathy

Depression is a disorder that often comes along with strong impairments of social functioning. Until recently, researchers assumed that acute episodes of depression also impair empathy, an essential skill for successful social interactions and understanding others. However, previous research had been mostly carried out in groups of patients who were on antidepressant medication. Novel insights of an interdisciplinary collaboration involving […]

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Researchers pioneer new model of care for patients with back pain in NZ

Researchers are pioneering a new model of care for patients with back pain in New Zealand, in a bid to address what is a costly and growing problem. University of Otago researchers, together with their colleagues at AUT have been working to develop the stratified care model for management of low back pain (STarT Back) in New Zealand. The model, […]

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More opioids given than prescribed in emergency department

(HealthDay)—The rate of emergency department visits with opioids only given during the visit is higher than the rate for visits with opioids only prescribed at discharge and for visits with opioids given and prescribed, according to a May data brief published by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention National Center for Health Statistics. Pinyao Rui, M.P.H., and Susan […]

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Amid fentanyl crackdown, Mexico risks ‘balloon effect’

President Donald Trump says China’s new ban on all fentanyl-related substances will be a “game-changer” in the deadly US opioid crisis, but experts warn it may just shift production elsewhere—particularly Mexico. Under pressure from Trump, China on May 1 banned all chemical analogues of fentanyl, the synthetic drug at the heart of an overdose epidemic that is killing tens of […]

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Doping soldiers so they fight better—is it ethical?

The military is constantly using technology to build better ships, warplanes, guns and armor. Shouldn’t it also use drugs to build better soldiers? Soldiers have long taken drugs to help them fight. Amphetamines like Dexedrine were distributed widely to American, German, British and other forces during World War II and to U.S. service members in Korea, Vietnam, Kuwait, Iraq and […]

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