opioid abuse

Preference for fentanyl higher among young, white, frequent opioid users

A minority of people who use illicit opioids indicated a preference for fentanyl, the super-potent synthetic opioid that accounts for much of the recent rise in U.S. overdose deaths, according to a new study led by researchers at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. The study, based on…

Prescription size predicts persistent opioid use after cardiothoracic surgery

Prescription size is associated with increased new persistent opioid use among patients after cardiothoracic surgery, according to a study published online Aug. 22 in the Annals of Thoracic Surgery. Alexander A. Brescia, M.D., from the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, and colleagues identified opioid-naive Medicare patients undergoing cardiothoracic surgery between 2009 and…

Adults who mix cannabis with opioids for pain report higher anxiety, depression

A researcher from the University of Houston has found that adults who take prescription opioids for severe pain are more likely to have increased anxiety, depression and substance abuse issues if they also use marijuana. “Given the fact that cannabis potentially has analgesic properties, some people are turning to it…

Teens abusing painkillers are more likely to later use heroin

A USC study in the July 8 issue of JAMA Pediatrics shows that teens who use prescription opioids to get high are more likely to start using heroin by high school graduation. “Prescription opioids and heroin activate the brain’s pleasure circuit in similar ways,” said senior author Adam Leventhal, a professor of…

15 Percent of Teens and Young Adults Prescribed Opioids During ER Visit

Almost 15 percent of teens and young adults are prescribed opioids during an emergency room visit, according to a new study. In contrast, 3 percent of teens and young adults seen in an outpatient clinic receive an opioid prescription, NBC News reports. “Adolescents and young adults are such a high-risk population for opioid…