The Real Reason Fentanyl is So Dangerous

Fentanyl plays a role in more and more opioid overdose deaths. Most fentanyl used ‘on the streets’ starts in China, with precursors shipped to California or Mexico before distribution throughout the US. Fentanyl acts very potently at the same receptors as heroin, morphine, and oxycodone. Reports of overdose deaths caused Read more…

A Save with Suboxone?

I’d like to share a recent email exchange with a reader. The post is long, but there are several interesting aspects to the discussion. I’ve removed the conversational parts, as well as the identifying information. The initial message: I was an intravenous heroin user for three years. After treatment I Read more…

Tough Choice

I have been struggling with part II, primarily because there are no easy answers to the situation. I realize that I could easily criticize whichever path a doctor suggests for our imaginary patient. As an aside, I believe that a major reason for the lack of sufficient prescribers of buprenorphine Read more…

Weezer Ex-Bassist Dies, Suspected Overdose

Written by Daniel Gordon at ThirdAge.com: Former Weezer bassist Mikey Welsh was found dead in a Chicago hotel room Saturday afternoon, the Chicago Tribune reports. Raffaello Hotel staff reportedly found the 40-year-old ex-musician on the floor of his room around 1 p.m. Saturday. The Chicago Tribune reported that narcotics are Read more…

Consequences Section

Weeks ago I posted a few new ideas—things like a memorial wall for victims of opioid dependence, and a ‘wall of shame’ for doctors who are known for reckless prescribing of opioids.  I mentioned these ideas over at SuboxForum as well. I received good feedback from readers here, and from Read more…

Narcissism, Celebrity Rehab, and Another Overdose Death

On May 27th, 2011, actor Jeff Conaway died from complications of opioid dependence. His death has been attributed to several causes—sepsis, pneumonia, and aspiration among them— but there is little debate over the ultimate cause of his death at the age of 60 years, that being addiction to opioid pain Read more…

A true epidemic, with no easy scapegoats

Today an article on the web site Medscape describes the epidemic of opioid dependence in this country.  The article describes what people who work with addiction already know– that use of opioid medications has increased in a way never seen before for any medication.  The article does a good job Read more…

Is She Still Using?

I have been involved in Q and A with a person in another part of the country, and will share some of our exchange after removing the identifying info. BTW, I receive many e-mails from people and I just don’t have time to answer most of them; I DO provide Read more…

Overdose Memorials during an Epidemic

I sometimes get the sense that there is a parallel universe besides this one, and I am not sure which one is real.  In one, the kids grow up safely, and every premature death is cause for alarm that generates immediate effective action by the community.  In the other universe, Read more…

Deaths on Suboxone

I wish I had more time to devote to this topic right now, but I am on my way to a short vacation… so I will not be available by e-mail for at least a few days.  Everyone is pacing around the house right now, waiting for me to finish Read more…