Does prescribed opioid use in children lead to later drug misuse?

Calls for rigorous research to determine if short-term medical use in children is safe

Does prescribed opioid use in children lead to later drug misuse?Pediatric researchers are calling for more rigorous research into the possible link between short-term opioid use for pain management in childhood and opioid use disorder later in life. The University of Alberta team reviewed the results of 21 previous studies but found no definitive answer to the question, according to a new study published this week in…

Hunter Biden’s art career can’t help but ensnare his father

The president’s son could reap a small fortune from the sales of his mediocre art

Hunter Biden’s art career can’t help but ensnare his fatherMany public and political figures have enjoyed painting, drawing or sculpting as a budding career or a carefree pastime. United Kingdom Prime Minister Sir Winston Churchill created over 500 paintings and sold a few in his lifetime. Several U.S. presidents, including Ulysses S. Grant, Dwight D. Eisenhower, Jimmy Carter and George W. Bush, displayed a…

Artificial intelligence predicts new illegal drugs before they hit the streets

Staying one step ahead of illicit drug makers

Artificial intelligence predicts new illegal drugs before they hit the streetsAn international team of researchers is using artificial intelligence to predict new illegal drugs before they hit the streets – which could help save lives and fight crime. “We are anticipating what street drugs, or novel psychoactive substances, will appear before they are made or before they enter communities,” said team member David Wishart, University…

U of A researcher part of team receiving $2 million to fight overdose epidemic

National Overdose Response Service provides safety, dignity and support to drug users anywhere in Canada

U of A researcher part of team receiving $2 million to fight overdose epidemicCOVID-19 social isolation is one of the main causes of Canada’s overdose epidemic. Each day there are up to 17 overdoses in Canada and two to four in Alberta. The vast majority of overdoses occur when people use alone. Monty Ghosh, a physician and assistant professor at the University of Alberta and the University of…

Data highlights value of supervised drug consumption services

Increased visits play a role in a decrease in overdose deaths

Data highlights value of supervised drug consumption servicesResearchers have found a link between increased visits to supervised consumption sites in Alberta and decreased fentanyl-related overdose deaths. Using publicly available opioid-response reports from the province of Alberta, the University of Alberta researchers looked at the number of fentanyl-related overdose deaths by quarter from 2017 to 2020, as well as the number of visits…

Innovative syringe detects potentially lethal fentanyl overdose

Potentially life-saving product wins Telus Innovation Challenge's $100,000 first prize

Innovative syringe detects potentially lethal fentanyl overdoseA group of University of Alberta science students won $100,000 to help turn a brainstorming session about what could have helped family members avoid a fentanyl overdose into a street-ready solution that will ultimately be a lifeline for those who struggle with addiction. “We’ve witnessed addiction and overdose in our families, so we were talking…

The war on drugs is costly and off-target

A report on drug abuse released by police chiefs is less about reducing drug abuse and more about protecting police budgets and jobs

The war on drugs is costly and off-targetThe Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police (CACP) recently released a 14-page report on the decriminalization of drugs. The report points to a large body of evidence illustrating the efficacy of safe consumption sites in achieving a number of health and social objectives. That’s especially true when clients are offered access to integrated health and…

What can you do about the opioid crisis?

Much like first aid and CPR, bystander naloxone training is one of the best tools available to save lives, U of A experts say

What can you do about the opioid crisis?Who needs a free naloxone kit? Just about anyone who might come across an opioid overdose, according to a range of University of Alberta experts, including a pharmacist, the head of campus security, a student volunteer and a public health scientist. Alberta Health Services first made the kits and training available for free to the…

Why COVID-19 could make the overdose epidemic worse

Social isolation can be deadly for people struggling with addictions, says University of Alberta expert

Why COVID-19 could make the overdose epidemic worseWhen Alberta’s chief medical officer, Deena Hinshaw, announced special exemptions to COVID-19 regulations for group therapy in residential addiction treatment centres, it was exactly what University of Alberta addictions expert Cameron Wild was hoping to hear. “The whole concept of recovery is in part founded on developing strong social supportive relationships,” said Wild. Wild is principal investigator with the…

Not all hallucinations or delusions are caused by mental illness

Psychotic episodes can occur for a variety of reasons, not all of them having to do with mental illness

Not all hallucinations or delusions are caused by mental illnessHallucinations and delusions are the first things many people imagine when they hear about mental illness. They think of people who hear voices, see imaginary people or think they are someone they’re not. While hallucinations and delusions are not the hallmark of every mental illness, they can occur as a symptom of several disorders. Schizophrenia…
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