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01 Sep

Smoking Cigarettes Changes the Teenage Brain, New Study Finds

A new study finds gray matter differences in the teenage brain that may lead to early nicotine use and long-term addiction.

Health News Results - 352

Most Americans Don't Know That Family Doctors Can Prescribe Anti-Opioid Meds

Most people addicted to opioids and their loved ones are unaware that their primary care doctor can prescribe a medication to treat the disorder, a new nationwide survey reveals.

"We've made great strides in making it easier for primary care doctors to prescribe these safe and effective treatments, but our study indicates a critical disconnect between the need for medications for opioid u...

FDA's Move to OK First Menthol Vapes Is Big Mistake, Health Advocates Say

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration's decision to authorize the first menthol-flavored e-cigarettes has drawn the the ire of health advocates who say the decision undermines efforts to end the youth vaping epidemic in America.

In its approval of four flavored vaping products made by Njoy, the agency defended its decision.

“Based upon our rigorous scientific review, in this insta...

Most Outpatient Mental Health Clinics Don't Offer Opioid Addiction Meds

Only a third of outpatient mental health facilities offer medications essential for treating opioid addiction, a new study finds.

Standard care for treating people with opioid use disorder involves drugs like buprenorphine, methadone and naltrexone, which help suppress cravings and blunt the effects of narcotics.

But most front-line mental health facilities don’t offer these

Rates of Problem Marijuana Use Are Rising Among Seniors

As marijuana use becomes legal and more accepted across America, more seniors are developing unhealthy relationships with the drug, a new report suggests.

A look at data on almost 56 million Medicare beneficiaries finds "rates of health care encounters with cannabis-related disorders increased from 2017 through 2022," according to a study led by

  • Ernie Mundell HealthDay Reporter
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  • June 18, 2024
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  • What Are Nicotine Pouches, and Are They Less Harmful Than Smoking?

    Nicotine pouches might be less harmful than smoking or chewing tobacco, but they still pose an addiction risk to users, a new review finds.

    These pouches are filled with crystallized nicotine, and are placed between the gums and lips, researchers said. They are sold in various ...

    Help for Women Battling ADHD & Opioid Addiction in Pregnancy

    Opioid overdoses in pregnant women are at an all-time high in the United States, and researchers think they’ve figured out one way to counter this phenomenon.

    Attention deficit-hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is strongly tied to substance use disorders, which means some women who become pregnant are taking ADHD medications while receiving treatment for

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  • June 17, 2024
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  • FDA, DOJ Form Task Force to Fight Illegal Vapes

    The U.S. Food and Drug Administration announced Monday that it has joined up with the Department of Justice and several other federal agencies to do more to stop the sale of illegal e-cigarettes in this country.

    In launching the newly created task force, the FDA aims "to coordinate and streamline efforts to bring all available criminal and civil tools to bear against the illegal distribut...

    FDA Rescinds Ban on Juul E-Cigarettes

    A ban on Juul e-cigarettes has been reversed, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration announced Thursday.

    Why? The agency said it needs to review both new court decisions and updated data from the vape maker. While the company's e-cigarettes are back under review, they have not been fully cleared for sale in this country, the FDA said in its 

  • Robin Foster HealthDay Reporter
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  • June 7, 2024
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  • Shared Fentanyl Pipe Residue a New Overdose Danger

    San Francisco researchers report that smoking has now replaced injections as the most common way of ingesting illicit fentanyl.

    That switch has created a potentially deadly new danger, however, as fentanyl residues slowly build up in shared equipment used to smoke the drug.

    Study author Dr. David Ciccarone likened it to a prio...

    TikTok: Ground Zero for Vaping Sales to Kids

    TikTok is full of fun memes, pranks, dances and challenges -- and illicit vaping product sales targeting teenagers, a new study reports.

    Advertising and sales of vaping products is common on the video-sharing platform, according to findings published May 23 in the journ...

    Quit-Smoking Drug Chantix May Also Help Folks Stop Vaping

    A quit-smoking drug appears to help people drop their vaping addiction, a new study shows.

    Vapers who took varenicline (Chantix) were significantly more likely to quit using e-cigarettes loaded with nicotine than ...

    The More Kids Use Social Media, The More They're Likely to Vape

    Kids and young adults who use social media for seven or more hours per day have double the risk of taking up vaping or smoking or both, new research shows.

    The study is based on a survey of almost 11,000 young British people ages 10 to 25 who were tracked from 2015 through 2021.

    Overall, 8.5% said they currently smoked, 2.5% said they vaped and about 1% did both.

    How much ti...

    U.S. Drug Overdose Deaths Decline for First Time in 5 Years

    The relentless rise in deaths from drug overdose in the United States may finally have stalled: New data from 2023 show the first decline in such deaths since 2018.

    "Statistics indicate there were an estimated 107,543 drug overdose deaths in the United States during 2023 -- a decrease of 3% from the 111,029 deaths estimated in 2022," CDC statisticians wrote.

    They released the new nu...

    Police Seizures of Pills With Fentanyl Have Skyrocketed

    Police seizures of illicit fentanyl pills have soared in recent years, a new study has found.

    The number of pills containing fentanyl seized by law enforcement was 2,300 times greater in 2023 than in 2017 – more than 115 million pills, compa...

    How Mindfulness Could Help Folks Quit Opioids

    Using mindfulness to help people trying to overcome opioid addiction can boost their odds of continuing treatment, new research shows.

    The approach helps folks how to deal with tension, savor life and reframe their thinking, the researchers explained.

    "Better treatment protocols could save thousan...

    A Parent's Watchful Eye Does Keep Kids From Drugs, Alcohol: Study

    Parents can be very effective buzzkills for their teens, just by letting kids know they're being closely watched, a new study reports.

    Teenagers are less likely to drink, smoke or use drugs when parents keep tabs on their activities, according to fin...

    Drug May Help Folks Kick the Vaping Habit

    An experimental anti-nicotine drug appears to help people quit vaping, a new study says.

    Cytisinicline is a naturally occurring plant-based substance that binds to nicotine receptors in the brain, reducing a person's cravings, researchers said.

    The drug has been shown effective in helping people

  • Dennis Thompson HealthDay Reporter
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  • May 7, 2024
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  • Opioids During Pregnancy May Not Raise Psychiatric Risks for Offspring

    Prescription opioids taken during pregnancy are not associated with a substantial increase in risk of developmental disorders like ADHD in children, a new study has found.

    “A slightly increased risk of neuropsychiatric disorders was found, but this should not be considered clinically meaningful” becaus...

    Drug, Alcohol Abuse Goes Untreated in Many Ex-Prisoners

    Most ex-cons are unlikely to receive substance use treatment following their release from prison, even though odds are high they are struggling with addiction, a new study finds.

    National estimates suggest as many as 85% of inmates leave prison with some form of substance abuse problem, researchers said.

    But only 17% of ex-cons on Medicaid in Virginia have been diagnosed with substa...

    Two-Drug Combo Curbs Drinking for People Battling Severe Alcoholism

    A combo of an allergy drug and a blood pressure med appears to lower daily drinking in folks battling severe alcoholism, French researchers report.

    The two generic drugs are the antihistamine cyproheptadine and prazosin, which treats high blood pressure and urinary urgency, noted a team led by Henri-Jean Aubin, of the Uni...

    Most Homeless Americans Are Battling Mental Illness

    Two-thirds of homeless people are experiencing some form of mental health disorder, a large, new review of data on the subject.

    The analysis found that men who are homeless are more likely to be battling mental illness than women, although rates were high for both genders compared to the general population.

    There are signs that rates of mental illness may be on the rise among homele...

    Sports Gambling, Binge Drinking a Dangerous Duo for Health

    People who gamble on sports are more likely to be binge drinkers as well, a new report finds.

    Both women and men who bet on sports were at least twice as likely to binge drink compared to non-gamblers, results showed. Further, the odds of binge drinking increased with the frequency of gambling.

    “With past research showing that sports gamblers are more likely to report symptoms of ...

    Mouse Study Finds Brain Target to Block Alcohol Cravings

    For folks who have battled alcohol dependency for years, any treatment that could curb or block alcohol cravings would be a huge advance.

    Now, research in mice is giving a glimmer of hope that just such a therapy might be possible.

    A compound -- so far dubbed LY2444296 -- appears to block a key brain cell receptor called the kappa opioid receptor (KOP), a team at the Scripps Researc...

    Telehealth May Help People Stick With Alcoholism Treatment

    Telehealth might be a more effective way of treating alcoholism than in-person therapy sessions, a new study reports.

    Alcoholics who receive treatment through telehealth were more likely to engage in more therapy visits and stick to anti-alcohol medication longer than those who venture out for alcohol use disorder therapy, researchers found.

    These results are “particularly importa...

    Taking 'Study Drugs' Like Adderall Could Be Gateway to More Drug Abuse

    College students who use drugs like Adderall to help them focus on their studies may be setting themselves up for trouble.

    Researchers asked 700 undergraduates across the United States about drugs commonly used by students -- including ADHD medications like Adderall, cannabis, nicotine, alcohol, MDMA and ecstasy. They also asked about students' academic performance and physical and mental...

    U.S. Deaths Linked to Alcohol Keep Rising, Especially Among Women

    Deaths where alcohol played a key role climbed sharply in recent years, hitting women even harder than men, new government data shows.

    Between 2016 and 2021 (the latest numbers available), "the average number of U.S. deaths from excessive alcohol use increased by more than 40,000 [29%], to 178,000 per year," reported a team from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

    P...

    Nearly 4 in 10 Americans Know Someone Who's Died From Drug Overdose

    More than two in every five Americans know someone who's died from a drug overdose, a new study shows.

    The study highlights the heavy toll that the U.S. opioid epidemic has taken on the nation, researchers say.

    “The experiences and needs of millions of survivors of an overdose loss largely have been overlooked in the clinical and public health response to the nation's overdose cri...

    Menthols Ban Would Slash U.S. Smoking Rates: Study

    A ban on menthol cigarettes would likely lead to a meaningful reduction in smoking rates, a new review argues.

    Almost a quarter of menthol smokers quit smoking altogether after menthol cigarettes were banned in their country or community, researchers report Feb. 21 in the journal Nicotine & Tobacco Research.

    “This review provides compelling evidence for the U.S. Food ...

    It's Tougher for Non-White Americans to Get Opioid Addiction Drug

    Americans addicted to opioids who need the anti-addiction med buprenorphine are far more likely to find it if they live in a predominantly white neighborhood, new research finds.

    “Access is substantially better in areas that are very white," said study lead author Coleman Drake, an assistant professor of health policy and ma...

    Access to Opioids Could Be Boosting Suicide Rates

    Increased access to prescription opioids has driven up U.S. suicide rates by making it easier to women to end their lives, a new study claims.

    The study also blames a shrinking federal safety net during tough economic times for rising suicide rates.

    “We contend that the U.S. federal government's weak regulatory oversight of the pharmaceutical industry and tattered social safety ne...

    Drug That Treats Cocaine Addiction May Curb Colon Cancer

    FRIDAY, Feb. 16, 2024 (HealthDay news) -- A drug first developed to treat cocaine addiction might also help slow the spread of advanced colon cancer, a new study suggests.

    The drug vanoxerine appears to suppress cancer stem cell activity by essentially rewiring gene networks critical to tumor growth, the researchers explained.

    “Tumors treated with vanoxerine become more susceptibl...

    E-Coupons Are Luring Folks to Taking Up Vaping

    Coupons for e-cigarettes appear to be a powerful way to get people hooked on vaping, a new study shows.

    People who receive coupons for e-cigarettes are 50% more likely to begin vaping, and less likely to quit once they've started, according to findings published recently in the American Journal of Preventive M...

    Mom's Opioid Use in Pregnancy Raises Child's Asthma, Eczema Risk

    Fetal exposure to opioids may change a baby's immune system, triggering a rise in risks for eczema and asthma through early childhood, new research shows.

    Children born to women who used opioids during pregnancy had much higher rates of eczema, as well as conditions such as "diaper rash," during infancy, Australian researchers report.

    These children also went on to have significantl...

    Marijuana Has No Role in Taking Up or Quitting Opioids: Study

    There's no link at all between weed use and a person's use of illicit opioids, one way or the other, a new review concludes.

    Cannabis isn't a gateway drug that can spark a person's desire to try narcotics, results show.

    On the other hand, weed also isn't effective in helping wean addicts off opioids, researchers said.

    These results have significant implications for U.S. opioid...

    U.S. Has Seen Steady Rise in Role of Alcohol, Drugs in Heart Deaths

    Heart disease deaths linked with alcohol or drug use have been steadily increasing in the United States, a new study has found.

    Deaths from heart disease in which substance use was cited as contributor rose an average of 4% per year between 1999 and 2019, researchers report.

    Further, the death rate accelerated in recent years, rising more than 6% from 2012 to 2019, according to find...

    What's Your Bedtime Routine? Survey Finds Americans' Favorites

    A hot shower, a glass of wine, a good book and sex are a few of Americans' favorite ways to unwind at bedtime, a new survey shows.

    "What defines a comfortable night's sleep varies from person to person, but developing a consistent sleep routine that removes distraction is a big first step in building a habit of good sleep health," said Dr. ...

    Reddit Posts Show Ozempic, Wegovy Cutting Users' Alcohol Use

    Social media is abuzz with the possibility that newfangled weight loss drugs can also reduce cravings for alcohol, a new study says.

    Across a number of Reddit threads, users of weight-loss drugs like Ozempic reported that they felt less need to drink beer, wine and liquor.

    Threads bearing titles like “Did scientists accidentally invent an anti-addiction drug?” and “I don't kno...

    Addiction Treatment for Teens in Crisis Is Often Hard to Find

    A 'secret shopper' study finds that for many American families, accessing inpatient treatment for a teen battling addiction can be next to impossible.

    “If you are a family in crisis and you have a kid for whom outpatient treatment is not an option, you hope to be able to call the closest residential facility to you and have access to timely, safe, affordable care for your child,” said...

    America's School Counselors Say Vaping, Gaming Are Tough Issues for Kids

    Online gaming and vaping to the point of addiction have become widespread enough that most high school counselors regularly confront these behaviors in today's teens, a new survey shows.

    Four out of five counselors say they've worked with at least one student during the past year who had struggled with problematic use of video games or e-cigarettes. However, few said they had the training...

    FDA Approves First Test to Spot Folks at High Risk of Opioid Use Disorder

    A newly approved test can determine whether a person has a genetically driven risk of becoming addicted to opioids.

    The AvertD test, the first of its kind, uses a DNA sample swabbed from a patient's cheek to determine if they have a combination of genetic variants associated with an elevated risk of opioid addiction.

    The 15 genetic variants detected by the test are involved in the b...

    You're Far Less Likely to Get an Opioid Now After Surgery

    In response to the ongoing crisis of opioid misuse, U.S. doctors had already cut the amount of opioids they gave patients after surgery by 2022 to just a third of the amount given in 2016, new research shows.

    Much of the decline happened before the pandemic, however, and the rate at which doctors are reducing the use of post-op opioids has slowed.

    The use of opioids during surgery r...

    Popular 'Nicotine Pouches' Won't Help Smokers Quit: Study

    Oral nicotine pouches might be marketed as an alternative to cigarettes, but they do little to curb smokers' nicotine cravings, a new study finds.

    The pouches -- which contain nicotine powder and other flavorings, but no tobacco leaf -- take too long to provide the nicotine “spike” that eases cravings, researchers report in the Nov. 15 issue of journal Addiction.

    Curren...

    More Than 1 in 6 U.S. Adults, Teens Have Substance Use Disorder

    TUESDAY, NOV. 14, 2023 (Healthday News) -- Over 1 in 6 Americans, adults and teens alike, suffered a substance use disorder in 2022, new government data released Monday shows.

    In the survey, alcohol and drug abuse involved roughly the same numbers of people: About 30 million had an al...

    Vaping's Popularity Falls Among U.S. High School Students

    Warnings about the dangers of vaping may be reaching American teens: A new U.S. government report shows e-cigarette use is down among high school students.

    In fact, use of any tobacco product over the past 30 days declined among this age group during the 2022-2023 school year, from 16.5% to 12.6%.

    This was driven largely by a decline in e-cigarette use, which dropped from 14.1% to 1...

    'Friends' Star Matthew Perry Dead at 54

    Matthew Perry, one of the stars of the beloved television sitcom “Friends,” died on Saturday.

    Perry, 54, was best known for his portrayal of Chandler Bing in the long-running show, but he also starred in many other roles.

    Capt. Scot Williams, of the Los Angeles Police Department's Robbery-Homicide division, confirmed Perry's death, the New York Times reported. Investiga...

    Drug-Linked Disciplinary Actions by Schools Spiked After Oregon Legalized Marijuana

    New research suggests a link between middle school students being disciplined for marijuana use and legalization of recreational weed, particularly when schools are close to dispensaries that sell the drug.

    Researchers studied this in Oregon, where recreational marijuana became legal for adults back in 2015.

    They found that middle school students received office discipline referrals...

    Restricting Access to Vapes Might Drive People to Cigarettes

    While U.S. policymakers have restricted flavored vapes to make e-cigarettes less appealing to young people, that plan may be backfiring.

    A new study found that for every 0.7 milliliters of “e-liquid” for e-cigarettes that isn't sold because of flavor restrictions, an additional 15 traditional cigarettes were sol...

    Telemedicine Could Improve Treatment for Opioid Use Disorder

    Telehealth may be a powerful way to get people with opioid use disorder to take -- and stay on -- medication to treat their addiction.

    Researchers report that those who started buprenorphine treatment via telehealth had an increased likelihood of staying in treatment longer compared to those who started the treatment in another setting.

    “This study suggests that telehealth may inc...

    As Menthol Ban Nears, Big Tobacco Is Adding Synthetic Version to Cigarettes Instead

    Cigarette makers are using synthetic menthol substitutes in what appears to be an effort to skirt a looming federal menthol ban, researchers say.

    The menthol flavor appeals to younger and newer smokers, according to investigators at Duke Health in Durham, N.C., and Yale University in New Haven, Conn.

    These new “non-menthol” cigarettes are being introduced in states that have alr...

    Third of Medicaid Patients With Opioid Use Disorder Don't Get Treatment

    Medications that cut cravings have been shown to help with opioid use disorder, yet nearly a third of Medicaid recipients dealing with opioid addiction aren't getting them, a new report shows.

    There were significant disparities in who gets these medications by age, race and states, according to the report re...

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