Residents of California can now receive relief using a drug (Naxolene) that some say will effectively limit the number of heroin overdose victims throughout the state. The recent passing of Hollywood actor Philip Seymour Hoffman due to heroin overdose could have been prevented by the proper treatment. Medical researchers have done several studies and clinical trials to prove the efficacy of the drug known as Naloxone in reversing the effects of heroin in the human body. There have been several medical emergencies caused by heroin or opiate overdose where paramedics administer naloxone intravenously and see the drug works within a few minutes.
HOW DOES HEROIN WORK?
Heroin is an illegal substance that is a derivative of morphine and is prone to abuse. The effects of heroin are rapidly felt by the user after injecting the drug. As soon as it passes through the blood-brain barrier, it is then converted into morphine and quickly binds to the opioid receptors which produce a sudden rush or “high??? to the user. But this sudden rush can create heroin side effects, particularly neurologic symptoms such as nausea, dry mouth, vomiting, and numbness of extremities.
HOW DOES NALOXONE WORK?
Once under the influence of heroin, the user can feel drowsy for hours following the initial surge of endorphins in the brain. Because of the effects of heroin in the central nervous system, it can cloud the mental function of the person as well as depress the cardiac and respiratory function. This type of reaction can result in a heroin overdose, which can easily lead to death. Naloxone can prevent these deaths if it is administered soon enough.
Naloxone reverses depression of the respiratory system and central nervous system that occur during a heroin overdose, allowing the victim to breathe normally. If the person who is administered Naloxone does not have opioids in their system, it is reported that Naloxone will have no effect.
Barbara Thompson, member of the National Council on Alcoholism Drug Dependence and Alcoholism claims the drug works on any opiate and that it can effectively and instantly reverse the side effects of an overdose within two minutes.
WILL THIS NEW DRUG HELP ADDICTS?
There is no better method in saving a drug abusers’ life than by helping the person recognize the ill-effects of drug abuse and stop it as early as possible. Several heroin addiction treatments are currently available for helping heroin abusers overcome addiction to the drug, but heroin’s addictive nature makes it especially difficult for users to kick the habit. One of the most common yet effective treatment options is the use of the synthetic opiate called methadone. This drug is effective in blocking the actions of heroin, and it also prevents a person from experiencing the negative effects of drug withdrawal. Psychiatrists also use other drugs like buprenorphine for behavioral therapy. This drug is one of the most recently added medications for treating substance abusers. Unlike methadone, buprenorphine can be prescribed even by family physicians, and it’s less likely to develop drug dependence. A new and more potent drug that is now used to counter heroin side effects goes by the brand name Suboxone, which is a combination of naloxone and buprenorphine.
Several information campaigns have been launched particularly in California to raise awareness and educate the people about the effects of heroin abuse and treatment options available for substance abusers. Parents and family members of substance abusers can now get prescriptions for naloxone and they are allowed to administer the drug to anyone who had a heroin overdose without any liability if anything goes wrong.
CALIFORNIA DRUG CRIME DEFENSE ATTORNEYS
Those facing charges for the possession, transportation, or distribution of heroin can face years in prison and thousands of dollars in fines. Our experience with countless drug crime defendants is that spending time behind bars does little to help them overcome their addiction. If you or your loved one are in need of a skilled drug crime attorney in Orange County, contact our law offices at (888) 250-2865 to obtain a free case evaluation.
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