In the western Mexican state of Michoacan, civilian militias have challenged a powerful drug cartel known as the Knights Templar. The vigilante uprising, which spurred the Mexican government to send soldiers and police to help counter the cartel, was fueled by migrants who returned to Mexico after years living north of the border.
Reny Pineda, who was raised in Los Angeles, is one of those migrants. When he returned to his homeland in Mexico, he found a new life fighting drug lords.
Underneath the charm of Martha's Vineyard's picturesque beaches, peaceful woods and luxury homes is a problem: Since August, there have been six overdose deaths on the island.
"That's a phenomenal rate for a community of 16,000 people — and that's not to mention the overdoses that haven't been fatal," says Charles Silberstein, an addiction specialist and psychiatrist at Martha's Vineyard Hospital. "We've had overdoses for years, but I don't think we've ever seen this kind of number or frequency."
Marcie Sillman talks to biotech journalist Luke Timmerman about the pharmaceutical company Merck buying the biotech company Idenix for over $3 billion and what that means for the future of a hepatitis C treatment. Also, they discuss the latest from the American Society Of Clinical Oncology meeting.
Heroin was once the scourge of the urban poor, but today the typical user is a young, white suburbanite, a study finds. And the path to addiction usually starts with prescription painkillers.
A survey of 9,000 patients at treatment centers around the country found that 90 percent of heroin users were white men and women. Most were relatively young — their average age was 23. And three-quarters said they first started not with heroin but with prescription opioids like OxyContin.
Scientists have known for a long time that the water coming out of your faucet at home might contain traces of drugs prescribed to people you've never met.
Research shows no one is getting a full dose of say, Prozac, from drinking tap water. But scientists do wonder whether pharmaceuticals in water supplies may be having more subtle, long-term impacts on human health and aquatic life.
From the Here & Now Contributors Network, Katie Colaneri of WHYY reports.
Heroin, the drug of the 90s, is back and thriving in Washington state.
“A hot batch of heroin hits the streets, and we will know it in a couple of hours because of the overdoses,” Hoquiam Police Chief Jeff Myers said. In Washington, opiate-related deaths have doubled in the past decade.
But efforts to provide recovery services have struggled to keep up with the drugs. And for many, particularly in rural areas where distances stretch for hours, it can be tough to reach clinics.
The Food and Drug Administration is trying to decide whether to approve a powerful new prescription painkiller that's designed to relieve severe pain quickly, and with fewer side effects than other opioids.
While some pain experts say the medicine could provide a valuable alternative for some patients in intense pain, the drug (called Moxduo) is also prompting concern that it could exacerbate the epidemic of abuse of prescription painkillers and overdoses.
Young adults who smoke marijuana at least once a week showed changes in the size and shape of two key brain regions, according to a new study of 20 pot smokers and 20 non-pot smokers between 18 and 25.
This is the first time recreational marijuana use has been connected to significant brain changes.
The findings, a collaboration between Northwestern University and Massachusetts General Hospital/Harvard Medical School, were published in The Journal of Neuroscience.
Since its founding in the 1930s, Alcoholics Anonymous has become part of the fabric of American society. AA and the many 12-step groups it inspired have become the country's go-to solution for addiction in all of its forms. These recovery programs are mandated by drug courts, prescribed by doctors and widely praised by reformed addicts.
Steve Scher talks with Linda Grant, CEO of Evergreen Manor, about potential funding cuts to drug treatment programs for low-income patients in Washington state. Evergreen Manor is a non-profit drug and alcohol treatment center in Everett.
Some of the nation's largest pharmaceutical companies have dramatically reduced payments to health professionals for promotional speeches amid heightened public scrutiny of such spending, a ProPublica analysis shows.
Eli Lilly & Co.'s payments to speakers dropped by 55 percent, from $47.9 million in 2011 to $21.6 million in 2012.
Pfizer's speaking payments fell 62 percent over the same period, from nearly $22 million to $8.3 million.