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April 2013
Alcohol Awareness Month
National Council on Alcohol and Drug Dependence

February 4th, 2013
SAMHSA Prevention Day
National Prevention day for Substance Abuse Professionals

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Jason Burke, MD

Hazards of Recreational Substance Abuse

Recreational substance abuse is very common in this country.  Fatal results can occur, especially when multiple substances are ingested.  We call this “Recreational Polypharmacy,” or “RP” for short.  This is a very serious problem and has led to a number of high profile deaths, such as Heath Ledger.  Common sources of RP in young people come from medications found at home, especially oxycodone, percocet, and oxycontin.  These drugs can produce disastrous results when mixed with alcohol or other sedatives.  Some drugs are much stronger in combination with certain other drugs, which is called “synergy” in the world of pharmacology. Mixing stimulants and sedatives can lead to stress on the heart, as well as problems with over-sedation if the stimulant wears off before the sedative.

As part of our educational campaign, Jasonburkemd.org is publishing a series of articles to help educate the public about the dangers of RP.

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