Narcotics; • The term narcotic is used for the sedative agent, For pain control medications of both narcotic and non-narcotic varieties. Today, the term "narcotic" refers tosubstances that bind to opioid receptors in the brain.
History: • The term "narcotic" is believed to have been coined by the Greek physician Galen to refer to agents that numb or deaden, causing loss of feeling or paralysis. It is based on the Greek word ναρκωσις(narcosis), the term used by Hippocrates for the process of numbing or the numbed state. Galen listed mandrake root, altercus (eclata). seeds, and poppy juice (opium) as the chief examples. Opium was the first opioid to be used.
Classifications Narcotics are classified by various drug schedules by the DEA, with regard to their potential for abus e, dependence, and addiction .
USES: • Narcotics are used as: analgesics for pain control, such as after oral surgery, for severe menstrual cramps, or for temporary pain relief in other outpatient surgical procedures. Intravenousnarcotics are also used for palliative care in relieving pain of patients diagnosed with terminal cancer.As antitussives, narcotics are commonly used as cough suppressants. Codeine is a common ingredient in prescription cough medications.Narcotics are also used as antidiarrheal medications; Paregoric, a liquid tincture containing powdered opium, anise oil and glycerine is sometimes prescribed for severe diarrhea.
SIDE EFFECT: Narcotics have a number of physical side effects, including: Constipation Drowsiness Euphoria Visual impairmnt , respiratory depression, Nause , skin irritation,sedation, etc.
Addiction • Narcotics are highly addictive substances with a great potential for abuse and dependence. Tolerance to narcotics is established within two to three days of continue d use.
Withdrawal • Cessation of narcotics results in withdrawal symptoms, which can perpetuate addiction due to unpleasant physical and psychological sensations. Most addicts need the aid of a treatment centerorrehab to quit using narcotics.
Physical symptoms accompanied by narcotic withdrawal include: • SweatingShakingMuscle spasms and crampsNauseaVomitingInsomniaJoint and bone painLack of appetite AnxietyDepressionFeverIrritabilityRapid heart rate and breathing.
Overdose • Because tolerance to narcotics builds up after short use, individuals addicted to narcotics must use higher and higher amounts of the drug to achieve the initial effect, which can lead to serious health problems, coma and death.
Similar Drugs • Narcotics are classified into three groups according to their origins. • Natural derivatives of opium include morphine and codeine. • Partially synthetic drugs derived from morphine include heroin, oxycodone, hydromorphone, and oxymorphone. Synthetic compounds that resemble morphine chemically include fentanyl, levorphanol, meperidine, methadone, and propoxyphene. .
Codeine : Codeine is an opiate known for its pain-relieving, cough relieving and antidiarrheal properties. Among the opiates, it is the most widely used, and is probably the most commonly used drug in the world.
Demerol : • Demerol, also known as pethidine or meperidine, is a fast-acting narcotic analgesic. It is used for the treatment moderate-to-severe pain associated with many medical procedures.
Fentanyl : • Of all the opioids, fentanyl is the most powerful, possessing 80 times the potency of morphine. With its powerful properties, fentanyl is used extensively for anesthesia and analgesia, as well as in cancer therapy and other chronic pain management.
Heroin : • Heroin is one of the most-used, most-rapidly acting, and most highly addictive opiate. Made from morphine, it is one of the most abused synthetic opiate. It usually appears in white or brown powder form
Hydrocodone : • Hydrocodone is an orally-active narcotic analgesic and cough suppressant. First synthesized in Germany in 1920, It is commonly compounded with paracetamol or ibuprofen, and is marketed under many brand names.
Hydromorphone : • Hydromorphone is commonly used in medicine as an alternative to morphine and as a cough suppressant, especially for patients suffering from dry cough. Like most opiates, it is potentially addictive.
Methadone : • Methadone is a unique opioid in the sense that rehabilitation facilities commonly offer this drug to treat heroin addicts. But since methadone itself could be addictive, there is a risk that a heroin addiction would be replaced with a methadone addiction.
Morphine : • Morphine is one of the best known opiate analgesics in history. Highly potent, morphine is also highly addictive. Nevertheless, it remains widely in use in hospitals for cancer patients and patients suffering from chronic pain.
Oxycodone : • Oxycodone is a strong narcotic analgesic and antitussive. Quite similar to codeine in structure and action, it is regarded as having superior benefits over morphine and other older opiates. Oxycodone, however, has a high addiction and abuse potential.
Percocet : • Percocet is a combination of oxycodone and acetaminophen. It is used to treat moderate to moderately severe pain. Its acetaminophen content also makes it effective against fever.
Vicodin : • Vicodin is a brand name for a narcotic analgesic that is a combination of hydrocodone and acetaminophen. Usually in tablet form, Vicodin is not usually abused because of its acetaminophen content, which could be toxic when taken in large doses.
Some Other Narcotics: • Thebaine, papaverine, oxymorphone, acetyldihydrocodeine, buprenorphine are also classified as narcotics