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USA. FDA Grants Purdue Pharma’s Nalmefene HCl Injection Fast Track Designation for the 
Emergency Treatment of Known or Suspected Opioid Overdose

Committed to advancing solutions to the opioid public health crisis, Purdue will not profit from nalmefene HCl. (Purdue Pharma L.P, USA, 13.03.2019)


Cerebellar Hippocampal and Basal Nuclei Transient Edema with Restricted diffusion (CHANTER) Syndrome.

Jasne AS, Alsherbini KH, Smith MS, Pandhi A, Vagal A, Kanter D.

Neurocrit Care. 2019 Feb 20. doi: 10.1007/s12028-018-00666-4.


Potentially deadly and memory-killing effect of opioid abuse explored

Doctors treating drug-overdose patients should be on the lookout for abnormal brain swelling, a byproduct of a mysterious syndrome that can be fatal and may cause profound amnesia in survivors, a new study suggests. (Yale News, USA, 18.03.2019)


USA. Opioid crisis: US schools prepare for student overdoses

The US state of Alabama is pioneering a project to train school staff - including teachers, coaches and administrators - how to treat pupils suffering from drug overdoses. (BBC, 11.03.2019)


Drugs Most Frequently Involved in Drug Overdose Deaths: United States, 2011-2016.

Hedegaard H, Bastian BA, Trinidad JP, Spencer M, Warner M.

Natl Vital Stat Rep. 2018 Dec;67(9):1-14.



Indien. Mehr als 150 Tote nach Konsum von gepanschtem Schnaps in Indien

Im Bundesstaat Assam sind mehr als 150 Menschen nach dem Konsum von illegal gebranntem Schnaps gestorben. (aerzteblatt.de, 25.02.2019)


Kanada. B.C. moves to stem high rate of overdose deaths by recent inmates

A coroner’s death review panel last year found about two-thirds B.C. residents who died of an illegal drug overdose over a 19-month period had recent contact with the criminal justice system. (Vancouver Sun, Kanada, 30.01.2019)


INTERVIEW: „Die fallenden Mortalitätsraten stehen im Gegensatz zu den Ergebnissen in den USA“

Interview mit Julia Schmieder, Doktorandin in der Abteilung Staat am DIW Berlin. (DIW Wochenbericht, Hrsg.: DIW - Deutsches Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung e. V., Berlin, 86. Jahrgang, 7 und 8/2019, 13.02.2019)


Todesfälle durch Suizid, Alkohol und Drogen sinken deutlich bei Männern und Frauen in Ost- und Westdeutschland

Von Peter Haan, Anna Hammerschmid, Robert Lindner und Julia Schmieder

Zwischen 1991 und 2015 ist die Zahl der sogenannten „Deaths of Despair“ bei Menschen mittleren Alters in Deutschland deutlich gesunken. Dies gilt auch bei Unterscheidung nach Geschlecht und nach Ost- und Westdeutschland für alle Gruppen. Dies steht in deutlichem Kontrast zu den USA, wo sich zwischen 1991 und 2014 die Zahl entsprechender Todesfälle für nichthispanische Weiße mehr als verdoppelt hat. Möglicher Grund ist die bessere Absicherung ökonomischer und gesundheitlicher Risiken in Deutschland. Gleichzeitig bleibt die Zahl der Todesfälle durch Suizid, Alkohol und Drogen bei Männern in Ostdeutschland deutlich höher als in Westdeutschland. (DIW Wochenbericht, Hrsg.: DIW - Deutsches Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung e. V., Berlin, 86. Jahrgang, 7 und 8/2019, 13.02.2019) 


Premature mortality from all causes and drug poisonings in the USA according to socioeconomic status and rurality: an analysis of death certificate data by county from 2000–15

Shiels, Meredith S et al.

The Lancet Public Health , Volume 4 , Issue 2 , e97 - e106 


UK. 'Xanax' linked to more than 200 deaths

At least 204 deaths have been linked to the misuse of anxiety drug Xanax in the UK since 2015, figures seen by the BBC's Victoria Derbyshire programme reveal.

Of these, there were 126 fatalities in Scotland between 2015 and 2017.

Counterfeit Xanax bars with a street value of more than £1m have been seized at UK ports and airports since 2016. (BBC, 05.02.2019)


Loperamid. Study finds rise in overdoses from opioids in diarrhea drug

A Rutgers study has uncovered a new threat in the opiate epidemic: Overdoses of loperamide, an over-the-counter diarrhea medication, have been steadily increasing in number and severity nationwide over five years. (MedicalXpress, USA, 04.02.2019)


England/Wales. Drug-related deaths in England - local authorities and how they are responding

Drug-related deaths in England3NATDrug-related deaths (DRDs) are at their highest level since records began in 1993 with 3,756 DRDs in England and Wales last year, 53% of which related to opiate use. Almost a third of all deaths from overdose in 2016 in Europe happened in the UK. This constitutes a public health and humanitarian crisis which must be addressed urgently. (NAT - National AIDS Trust, Januar 2019)


Associations between the use of specific psychotropic drugs and all-cause mortality among older adults in Germany: Results of the mortality follow-up of the German National Health Interview and Examination Survey 1998.

Du Y, Wolf I-K, Busch MA, Knopf H (2019) 

PLoS ONE 14(1): e0210695. doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0210695


Predictive Factors of Treatment Outcomes for Hospital Care in Children with Acute Methadone Poisoning.

Atighi Y, Eizadi-Mood N, Mansourian M, Zamani A, Saffaei A, Sabzghabaee AM.

J Res Pharm Pract. 2018 Oct-Dec;7(4):200-204. doi: 10.4103/jrpp.JRPP_16_141.


Psychoactive substances in natural and unnatural deaths in Norway and Sweden - a study on victims of suicide and accidents compared with natural deaths in psychiatric patients.

Gravensteen IK, Ekeberg Ø, Thiblin I, Helweg-Larsen K, Hem E, Rogde S, Tøllefsen IM.

BMC Psychiatry. 2019 Jan 18;19(1):33. doi: 10.1186/s12888-019-2015-9.


Schottland. Drugs Deaths Warning Over Lethal Street Valium

Glasgow. Addictions experts today voiced fears that street drugs being sold as Valium are responsible for an unprecedented number of drug related deaths in Glasgow.

Concerns were raised that "Street Valium" (also known as Street Blues) may be linked to a sharp rise in the number of fatal and non-fatal overdoses in the city. (Glasgow, City Council, 28.01.2019)


Prevention of Prescription Opioid Misuse and Projected Overdose Deaths in the United States.

Chen Q, Larochelle MR, Weaver DT, et al. 

JAMA Netw Open.2019;2(2):e187621. doi:10.1001/jamanetworkopen.2018.7621


Overdose Deaths Involving Fentanyl and Fentanyl Analogs - New York City, 2000-2017.

Colon-Berezin C, Nolan ML, Blachman-Forshay J, Paone D.

MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep. 2019 Jan 18;68(2):37-40. doi: 10.15585/mmwr.mm6802a3.


Changing risk and presentation of overdose associated with consumption of street drugs at a supervised injection site in Vancouver, Canada.

Notta D, Black B, Chu T, Joe R, Lysyshyn M.

Drug Alcohol Depend. 2019 Jan 15;196:46-50. doi: 10.1016/j.drugalcdep.2018.12.016.



Five-year standardised mortality ratios in a cohort of homeless people in Dublin

Ivers J, Zgaga L, O’Donoghue-Hynes B, et al

BMJ Open 2019;9:bmjopen-2018-023010. doi: 10.1136/bmjopen-2018-023010 


Drug Overdose Deaths Among Women Aged 30-64 Years - United States, 1999-2017.

VanHouten JP, Rudd RA, Ballesteros MF, Mack KA.

MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep. 2019 Jan 11;68(1):1-5. doi: 10.15585/mmwr.mm6801a1.


Overdose mortality rates in Croatia and factors associated with self-reported drug overdose among persons who inject drugs in three Croatian cities.

Handanagic S, Bozicevic I, Sekerija M, Rutherford GW, Begovac J.

Int J Drug Policy. 2019 Jan 11;64:95-102. doi: 10.1016/j.drugpo.2018.11.017.



Deutschland. Analyse drogeninduzierter Todesfälle – Abschlussbericht


Ziele des Berichts sind alters- und geschlechtsspezifische Analysen der Drogentodesfälle des Jahres 2015/16 und die Beobachtung zeitlicher Veränderungen bestimmter Charakteristika der drogenbezogenen Todesfälle der Jahre 2012 bis 2016.

Dies beinhaltet die Umstände des Drogentods wie die festgestellten Substanzen (auf der Grundlage toxikologischer Gutachten), den zusätzlichen Substanzkonsum oder die Auffindesituation, d.h. ob Dritte anwesend waren, Rettungsversuche unternommen wurden, Krisen vor dem Drogentod vorlagen, vorausgehende Komorbiditäten oder soziale Kontakte bestanden. (...)

Kapitel 6.6: Substitution und Überdosierung: Hinweise auf Substitution bei Überdosierung wurden für 8 % (2014) bis 14 % (2016) der Überdosierungen berichtet.

(IFT Institut für Therapieforschung, München, o.D.)


Deutschland. Analyse drogeninduzierter Todesfälle - Kurzbericht des BMG-geförderten Forschungsvorhabens 

IFT Institut für Therapieforschung, München, o.D.


How does MDMA kill?

(...) Most problems with recreational MDMA are acute. Dependence and other long-term problems are quite rare. Less than 1% of all drug treatment presentations are for ongoing problems with MDMA, such as dependence.

Most fatalities from taking ecstasy are a result of a combination of factors, not just the drug itself. (The Conversation - Academic rigour, journalistic flair, Australien, 22.01.2019)


Overdose Deaths Involving Fentanyl and Fentanyl Analogs — New York City, 2000–2017.

Colon-Berezin C, Nolan ML, Blachman-Forshay J, Paone D. 

MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep 2019;68:37–40. doi.org/10.15585/mmwr.mm6802a3.


US National Trends in Pediatric Deaths From Prescription and Illicit Opioids, 1999-2016.

Gaither JR, Shabanova V, Leventhal JM.

JAMA Netw Open. 2018 Dec 7;1(8):e186558. doi: 10.1001/jamanetworkopen.2018.6558.


USA. The Shocking Facts About Opioid Deaths in the Very Young

Yale researchers have uncovered startling data about the number of children and adolescents (younger than age 20) dying from opioid poisoning.

The general belief—until the Yale team delved into it—was that children and adolescents rarely die from ingesting illicit and prescription opioids.

But the researchers found that most studies had looked at deaths related to hospitalizations or emergency department visits—not deaths occurring outside hospitals.

Adding the deaths outside hospitals brought the average yearly death total to nearly 500—far more than had been expected; meaning that over the 18-year span of the study, ending in 2016, opioid deaths claimed the lives of almost 9,000 children and adolescents. Almost 8,000 of the deaths occurred among adolescents (aged 15 to 19), and just over 600 among children aged 0 to 4 years.

The findings were especially grim among children younger than age 5. Tragically, almost one death in four in this highly vulnerable group was due to homicide.

The study results were published in the December issue of JAMA Network Open. (AT Forum, 18.01.2019)


Smartphone erkennt Opiatüberdosierung an verminderten Atembewegungen

Seattle – US-Ingenieure haben eine Smartphone-App entwickelt, die bei Opiat­anwendern eine Atemdepression erkennt und automatisch einen Notruf sendet. Erste Tests in einem Drogenkonsumraum und im Operationssaal verliefen positiv, wie eine Studie in Science Translational Medicine(2019; 11: eaau8914) zeigt. (aerzteblatt.de, 10.01.2018)