Drug abuse and addiction have been inextricably linked with HIV/AIDS since the beginning of the epidemic. The link has to do with heightened risk—both of contracting and transmitting HIV and of worsening its consequences.
No vaccine yet exists to protect a person from getting HIV, and there is no cure. However, HIV can be prevented and its transmission curtailed. Drug abuse treatment fosters both of these goals. HIV medications also help prevent HIV transmission and the progression of HIV to AIDS, greatly prolonging lives.
NIDA’s Special Populations Office (SPO) has two goals: (1) to ensure that issues related to health disparities are adequately and appropriately represented in the Institute’ss extramural research programs and (2) to increase the number of underrepresented scientists participating in drug abuse research. SPO’s programs and initiatives for achieving these goals are described below.
Los cálculos a nivel nacional sobre las visitas a las salas de emergencias relacionadas con el consumo de drogas se obtienen de la Red de Alerta sobre el Abuso de Drogas (DAWN, por sus siglas en inglés).1,2 La DAWN es un sistema de vigilancia de salud pública administrado por la Administración de Servicios sobre el Abuso de Sustancias y Salud Mental (SAMHSA, por sus siglas en inglés), una dependencia del Departamento de Salud y Servicios Humanos de los Estados Unidos (HHS, por sus siglas en inglés).
The term “comorbidity” describes two or more disorders or illnesses occurring in the same person. They can occur at the same time or one after the other. Comorbidity also implies interactions between the illnesses that can worsen the course of both.
Cocaine is a powerfully addictive stimulant drug made from the leaves of the coca plant native to South America. It produces short-term euphoria, energy, and talkativeness in addition to potentially dangerous physical effects like raising heart rate and blood pressure.
La cocaína es una droga estimulante y altamente adictiva. Su sal de clorhidrato, la forma en polvo de la cocaína, se puede inhalar o disolver en agua para inyectarse. “Crack” es el nombre callejero de la forma de cocaína que ha sido procesada para hacer una roca de cristal que al calentarse genera vapores que se fuman. El término “crack” se refiere al crujido que produce la roca cuando está caliente.
Club drugs are a pharmacologically heterogeneous group of psychoactive drugs that tend to be abused by teens and young adults at bars, nightclubs, concerts, and parties. Gamma hydroxybutyrate (GHB), Rohypnol, ketamine, as well as MDMA (ecstasy) and methamphetamine (which are featured in separate DrugFacts) are some of the drugs included in this group.
Scientific research since the mid-1970s shows that drug abuse treatment can help many drug abusing offenders change their attitudes, beliefs, and behaviors towards drug abuse, avoid relapse, and successfully remove themselves from a life of substance abuse and crime. It is true that legal pressure might be needed to get a person into treatment and help them stay there. Once in a treatment program, however, even those who are not motivated to change at first can eventually become engaged in a continuing treatment process.