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Meth overdoses on the rise

In the news, deaths from overdoses of opioids, heroin and fentanyl have been in the spotlight. Rightly so. Opioid deaths in the U.S have risen to almost 50,000 people in 2017, according to the National Institute on Drug Abuse.

However, deaths from methamphetamines is on the rise as well. In fact, many individuals who die of meth also used opioids. Deaths from psychostimulates rose by nearly 18 times between 1999 and 2017. Deaths from meth in Ohio rose by a factor of 50 recent years.

The Economist discusses this scourge in an article this week.

…[In San Francisco] Half the people now admitted for psychiatric emergencies to the city’s general hospital are suffering from the effects of meth-induced psychosis…Like opioids, meth is highly addictive and difficult to quit. But unlike opioids, it lacks effective pharmacological treatments…There is also no equivalent of naloxone, a life-saving drug that reverse and opioid overdose.

Addressing both the meth and opioid epidemics are key public health priorities which merit more attention.

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