Lyrica and Gabapentin (Neurontin) Now Linked To Heroin Overdose Deaths

Researchers from the University of Bristol in England have linked opioid alternatives pregabalin (Lyrica) and gabapentin (Neurontin) to an increasing number of heroin-related overdose deaths in both England and Wales.

The two drugs are in a class of medications known as gabapentoids. Initially indicated to treat epilepsy, they have also been commonly prescribed to treat nerve pain (neuropathy), fibromyalgia, and chronic pain.

As reported in the journal Addiction, overdose deaths involving both opioids and gabapentoids rose from less than one death per year on average before 2009, to 137 fatalities in 2015. Of no coincidence, the surge closely aligned with a marked increase in the number of pregabalin and gabapentin prescriptions – a jump from one million prescriptions in 2004 to more than ten million in 2016.

Researchers state the rise in prescriptions has increased the drugs’ obtainability, and thus, abuse. When used in conjunction with heroin, the combined effect is enhanced, according to some users. Experiments have revealed that pregabalin decreases respiration, and therefore increases the risk of an opioid overdose.

Considering these drugs are thought of as “safe” medications and commonly used as alternatives to opioid painkillers, it is a bit strange to think of them being abused. Indeed, one 2016 study found that more than 20% of a pain clinic’s patients tested positive for illicit gabapentin (no prescription.) But that is not to say they are not the lesser of two evils, unquestionably.

Gabapentin is FDA-approved in the treatment of neuropathy due to shingles and epilepsy. It is also sometimes prescribed for migraines and fibromyalgia. In the U.S. in 2016, around 64 million prescriptions were written – a 49% increase from 2011.

While gabapentin is not classified as a controlled substance, pregabalin is. It’s a Schedule V drug, meaning it has a low potential for abuse. It is FDA-approved to treat epilepsy, diabetic nerve pain and neuropathy related to shingles, and fibromyalgia.

The opioid prescribing guidelines issued by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention last year recommended both Lyrica and gabapentin as opioid alternatives but said nothing about their abuse potential.

~ G. Natalee Serrels, M.A., Psychology

ADHD is a FAKE Disease Invented by Big Pharma to Drug Children for Profit

ADHD, or Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, is ubiquitous in the American classroom, there’s little debate about that. According to CDC statistics from 2012, 11 percent of children between the ages of four and 17 had been diagnosed with ADHD at some point. With over six million kids diagnosed, it’s hard not to wonder: Is this condition even a real problem?

Sure, some kids struggle to pay attention during school — but does that signify an actual problem with the child? Perhaps it’s more indicative of a society that simply doesn’t allow children to be children anymore. If you’ve ever found that the notion that children who’d rather play outside than sit at a desk are “broken” and need medication was a bit hard to digest, you may be right.

Writing for The Daily BellJoe Jarvis explains that there is proof that ADHD is nothing more than a fake disease. As Jarvis notes, two states with some of the highest incidences of ADHD are Arkansas and Kentucky.

These states are also home to a lot of children who enjoy hunting and fishing. Jarvis reports that census data from Arkansas shows 89 percent of kids fish and 35 percent hunt. Similar survey data shows that in Kentucky, 86 percent fish and 31 percent hunt. “These were the closest indicators I could think of that Kentucky and Arkansas children are more interested in being outside and active than cooped up in a classroom,” he contends.
Jarvis further notes that in states with the lowest incidences of ADHD, children seem to be far less interested in the great outdoors: In New Jersey, only 45 percent of kids go fishing. While not exactly evidence of a cause-and-effect relationship, it certainly raises questions about the way we look at kids who have trouble focusing in the classroom. Jarvis posits that the data he’s collected “suggests that the states with the highest instances of ADHD diagnosis are also states where the traditional values of public education are least aligned with the population.”
The validity of the ADHD diagnosis has been questioned for years now; many people wonder if it’s more of a behavioral issue than an actual cognitive deficit. But maybe it’s neither; maybe children should just be allowed to be children — without being drugged.

As Jarvis notes, many of the stats on ADHD are laughable. For example, boys are three times more likely to get an ADHD diagnosis than girls. Children from unstable home environments are also at a higher risk of being diagnosed with this so-called illness. These are the “facts” that allow the pharmaceutical industry unbridled access to drugging up little kids?

Even if you want to go so far as to say that ADHD is a behavioral issue and not a true cognitive problem, why choose potentially dangerous drugs over a more natural approach? There are many options to help kids who struggle in classrooms that do not involve prescription medication. For example, changing your child’s diet, providing them with more opportunities to exercise and ensuring they get enough sleep are all essential ways you can help your child be their best in the classroom.

Recent research has also shown that omega-3 fatty acids are a key nutrient to help support growing brains and bolster their overall cognitive performance.

In a world where kids (and adults) are spending less time outside and more time eating junk foods, its really no surprise better nutrition and a more active lifestyle could be simple fixes to many of our modern problems.

Sources for this article include:

TheDailyBell.com

CDC.gov

Natural News