Long-Term Study Concludes Drinking Does Not Protect Against Stroke
Researchers who studied 22,000 men over more than two decades have concluded that drinking alcohol is not associated with either the odds of having a stroke or the severity of stroke symptoms, Reuters reported Jan. 5.
Previous, smaller studies have suggested that moderate drinking may protect against stroke, but researcher Tobias Kurth and colleagues found that the association is weak and grows even weaker over time.
The study found that very light drinkers — those who consumed just one alcoholic drink weekly — were slightly less likely to suffer strokes, but moderate drinking had no impact.
On the other hand, heavy drinking was found to raise stroke risk, said Kurth, a researcher with the French national research institute INSERM and Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston.
The findings were published in the January 2010 issue of the journal Stroke.
A new study demonstrates that there is an association between schizophrenia and violence, but shows that this association is greatly increased by drug and alcohol abuse. Importantly, the study also finds that the risk of violence from patients with psychoses who also have substance use disorder is no greater than those who have a substance use disorder but who do not have a psychotic illness.
Russian President Dmitry Medvedev on Wednesday called time on the country’s vodka tipplers, saying alcoholism had become a "national disaster." Medvedev said measures aimed at reducing binge drinking had not reduced alcoholism in Russia, where downing vast amounts of vodka at one sitting is an integral part of national culture.
Heavy, constant drinking damages the brain in many different ways, including difficulties in perception of emotional expressions. Brain-imaging findings show that abstinent alcoholics have decreased activation in the amygdala and hippocampus regions of the brain when viewing faces with emotional expressions. Misreading facial cues can escalate conflict and difficulties, impaired social interaction and continued drinking.
Legal Drugs Kill Far More Than Illegal, Florida Says
From “Scarface” to “Miami Vice,” Florida’s drug problem has been portrayed as the story of a single narcotic: cocaine. But for Floridians, prescription drugs are increasingly a far more lethal habit.
An analysis of autopsies in 2007 released this week by the Florida Medical Examiners Commission found that the rate of deaths caused by prescription drugs was three times the rate of deaths caused by all illicit drugs combined.
Law enforcement officials said that the shift toward prescription-drug abuse, which began here about eight years ago, showed no sign of letting up and that the state must do more to control it.
“You have health care providers involved, you have doctor shoppers, and then there are crimes like robbing drug shipments,” said Jeff Beasley, a drug intelligence inspector for the Florida Department of Law Enforcement, which co-sponsored the study. “There is a multitude of ways to get these drugs, and that’s what makes things complicated.”
better prevention of drug problems, with improved life chances for children and young people
more people recovering from problem drug use
communities that are safer and stronger places to live and work
ensuring that children affected by parental substance use are safer
improving the effectiveness of delivery at a national and local level
The Government’s vision for how drug treatment services in Scotland should be delivered is based on the principle that recovery should be the explicit aim of all services providing treatment and rehabilitation for people with problem drug use.
‘Recovery’ is the principle that people suffering from problem drug use should receive support which does more than just reduce the immediate risks and harms of addiction. Individuals become active participants in their own care, moving forward in the hope and belief that they will get better.
What do we mean by recovery?
We mean a process through which an individual is enabled to move on from their problem drug use, towards a drug-free life as an active and contributing member of society. Recovery is most effective when service users’ needs and aspirations are placed at the centre of their care and treatment. There is no right or wrong way to recover.
The Road to Recovery sets out the Government’s vision of recovery as an achievable goal for people with problem drug use and the actions it intends to carry out to promote a shared understanding of how to promote and support recovery. These include establishing and supporting a ‘recovery network’, building the capacity of services which can help services users choose the treatment that is right for them, and ensuring that the principles of recovery are reflected in the reform of delivery arrangements and in training and workforce development programmes.
Risk indicators to identify intimate partner violence
Intimate partner violence against women is prevalent and is associated with poor health outcomes.
Understanding indicators of exposure to intimate partner violence can assist health care professionals to identify and respond to abused women. This study was undertaken to determine the strength of association between selected evidence-based risk indicators and exposure to intimate partner violence.
In this cross-sectional study of 768 women aged 18-64 years who presented to 2 emergency departments in Ontario, Canada, participants answered questions about risk indicators and completed the Composite Abuse Scale to determine their exposure to intimate partner violence in the past year.
Results: Intimate partner violence was significantly associated with
in a common-law relationship or
somatic symptoms (pain, nausea, depression, dizziness or concerns for which no adequate medical explanation can be found. Somatic symptoms imply that psychological factors are a large contributor to the symptoms’ onset, severity and duration. The symptoms are serious enough to cause significant emotional distress and impairment of social and/or occupational functioning)
having a male partner who was employed less than part time, or
having a partner with an alcohol or
Each unit increase in the number of indicators corresponded to a four-fold increase in the risk of intimate partner violence; women with 3 or more indicators had a greater than 50% probability of a positive score on the Composite Abuse Scale.
Intimate partner violence was not associated with pregnancy status.
Specific characteristics of male partners, relationships and women’s mental health are significantly related to exposure to intimate partner violence in the past year. Identification of these indicators has implications for the clinical care of women who present to health care settings. (Source: Open Medicine