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Naloxone: anti-overdose drug

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Heroin and prescription opiate abuse is a growing problem throughout the United States. Despite many attempts to quit using, many opiate addicts return to its use, each time risking their life. When a opiate addict stops using for a prolonged period of time their body is recouping from the effects of opiate and relearning how to live without the drug. When shooting up after a being clean the body isn’t always able to handle the opiate surge, often having fatal results.

Drug researchers have found a medication that can practically bring people back from the dead due to opiate over dose. Naloxone is the drug that researchers are now calling miraculous, however it still is unheard of by the majority of the public. Campaigners are now calling for Naloxone to be widely available to first responders to prevent deaths due to opiate overdose.

What is Naloxone?

Naloxone is an anti-overdose drug that is sold under many different names including: Narcan. This medication is given through injection or nasal spray. Naloxone binds with opiate receptors in the brain, repelling the opiate drugs taken and sending the individual into an instant and painful withdrawal. The individual given naloxone will begin to experience flu like symptoms with  sweats and chills, vomiting and aches. The symptoms are much worse than many will experience during heroin withdrawal, most never wanting to experience it again.

Controversy Around Naloxone Avilability

Naloxone has been carried by emergency rooms and ambulances for years, however now there is a push to have this drug readily available to those first on the scene of an overdose, the police and even the drug-taker’s friends and family. There is a lot of controversy around the idea of Naloxone being available to the friends and family of drug takes with the thoughts that this may give the addict the idea that they can push themselves to the limit and have this life saving drug near by to save them. Many professionals disagree that this is a life saving medicine that should be widely available to first responders and those who care for an addict.

Heroin and prescription opiate overdose is on the rise in the United States, with more than 16,000 people loosing their lives in 2010 alone. This is why seventeen US states have now changed laws, allowing naloxone to be accessible s to loved ones and first responders.  Those states which have not made naloxone readily available are being exposed to solid science to back up anecdotal findings and to encourage policy decisions in favor of expanding laws for naloxone. Once this law is passed throughout all states, the rate of heroin and opiate overdoses should drastically decrease, saving many lives.

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