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Clinical reviews on addiction

Tramadol associated with longer use of opioids after surgery

24 Jun 2019Paid-up subscribers

A study from the United States has found that patients prescribed tramadol for postoperative pain have a higher risk of prolonged opioid use relative to those given other short-acting opioids.

Alcohol use disorder affects offspring’s behaviour in adulthood

25 Mar 2019Registered users

Parental alcohol use disorder is associated with an increased likelihood of marriage to a spouse with alcohol use disorder, a Swedish population-based study has found. In particular, daughters of affected mothers were more likely to have an affected spouse.

Deaths associated with opioid overdose increase

22 Feb 2019

A study from Ontario, Canada, has found that prescribed, diverted and illicit opioids all play an important role in the recent increase in opioid-related deaths.

Childhood trauma raises risk of drug misuse later on

23 Jan 2019Registered users

Individuals who suffer abuse as children are more likely to use marijuana or cocaine later in life, a study from the United States has found.

Patients prescribed opioids for analgesia at risk of dependence

25 Jul 2018Registered users

A systematic review and meta-analysis has estimated that the incidence of iatrogenic opioid dependence or abuse in patients prescribed opioids for pain is almost 1 in 20.

Marked regional variations identified in primary care opioid prescribing

23 Apr 2018Registered users

Opioid prescribing rates are increasing and show notable geographical variations across England. They are highest in the North and in areas of social deprivation, a study on primary care prescribing has shown. Virtually all the low prescribing areas were in the south of England and nine of the ten highest prescribing areas were northern clinical commissioning groups (CCGs).

Benzodiazepines and Z-drugs are being widely used long term

23 Jan 2018Registered users

A UK primary care survey has found that many patients are taking benzodiazepines or Z-drugs, recommended for short-term use, for at least a year.

Are differing emotional responses to alcohol associated with choice of drink?

20 Dec 2017Paid-up subscribers

Emotional responses to drinking appear to vary according to the type of drink imbibed and differ between men and women, an analysis of data from the Global Drug Survey (GDS) has found.

Mortality risk raised during induction with methadone in opioid substitution therapy

23 Nov 2017Paid-up subscribers

Patients undergoing opioid substitution treatment have an increased mortality risk during the induction phase with methadone but not with buprenorphine, a meta-analysis has found. Mortality risk is also raised in the period immediately after leaving treatment with both drugs.

 

Smoking cessation

Quitting smoking in pregnancy lowers risk of preterm birth

25 Nov 2019Paid-up subscribers

Smoking cessation in pregnant women is associated with a reduced risk of preterm birth, a large study from the United States has shown. Information was obtained from live birth certificates issued between 2011 and 2017 as part of the US National Vital Statistics System. Overall, 25,233,503 pregnant women who delivered live neonates and had data recorded on pre-pregnancy and trimester-specific cigarette smoking frequency were included in the analysis.

Many smokers and former smokers have misconceptions about nicotine

25 Sep 2019Paid-up subscribers

Nearly 40% of smokers and former smokers believe it is the nicotine in cigarettes that causes cancer, a UK study has found.

Benefits of quitting smoking outweigh the risks of weight gain

24 Jun 2019Paid-up subscribers

The cardiovascular and overall mortality benefits of stopping smoking far outweigh the risks of weight gain and acquiring type 2 diabetes, a study from the United States has shown.

Are e-cigarettes more effective than nicotine replacement therapy to help smokers quit?

25 Mar 2019Registered users

One year smoking cessation rates were significantly higher in those who used e-cigarettes compared with those using traditional nicotine replacement therapy (NRT) products, in a UK prospective study. However, many more of those on e-cigarettes who had quit ordinary cigarettes still used the substitute while most of those who quit using NRT were free from treatment.

Rise in vaping accompanied by fall in youth smoking

22 Feb 2019

An increase in the use of e-cigarettes (vaping) has been associated with a drop in smoking by teenagers and young adults, a time trend analysis from the United States has found.

 

Editorials

Identifying at-risk drinkers in primary care

23 Sep 2014Registered users

It has been estimated that around 20% of patients attending their GP are at risk from their drinking or have an alcohol use disorder. Without using specific screening tools GPs may typically detect about 40% of cases they see, but miss the majority. The study authors suggest a single or two question approach to initial screening, followed by either the CAGE or AUDIT test for those who are positive, and onward referral for those who test positive on the more in-depth questionnaire.