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maj 2022

Watch out for the opioid painkillers!

The stern looks of Dr House tells it all. "I have been on quest for Vicodin - and I will not hesitate to use any weapon to get it!".
Actor named Hugh Laurie is standing with the walking stick. The background is grey, the actor wears black jacket, light blue shirt, dark jeans and sneakers. The photo is from photoshoot to Dr House.
Hugh Laurie as Dr House
The fictional unconventional, misanthropic medical genius who, despite his dependence on pain medication, leads a team of diagnosticians at the fictional Princeton-Plainsboro Teaching Hospital (PPTH) in New Jersey has been a public imagination of hero for quite some time. References to Sherlock Holmes appear throughout the series. The resemblance on deductive reasoning. Both characters play instruments (House plays the piano, the guitar and the harmonica; Holmes, the violin) and take drugs (House is dependent on Vicodin; Holmes uses cocaine recreationally).

The list of celebrities who died of medicament abuse is long. The iconic artist Prince died of an accidental fentanyl overdose at age 57 in his home in Chanhassen, Minnesota, on April 21, 2016. Prosecutors have alleged that he believed he was taking Vicodin, but that pills were laced with fentanyl, which is 50 to 100 times more potent than morphine. A television personality and former Playboy playmate, Anna Nicole Smith died on February 8, 2007, at age of 39. According to Today, Smith was battling a stomach flu and a 105 degree fever at the time of her death, and chose to fight it using a variety of prescription drugs - chloral hydrate, lorazepam and diazepam - instead of going to the hospital. Smith had struggled with depression and addiction to prescription drugs throughout her life. The Australian actor Heath Ledger died on January 22, 2008, from the effects of a mixture of several prescription drugs, including oxycodone, hydrocodone and diazepam, according to CNN. The 28-year-old, celebrated for his portrayal of the Joker in The Dark Knight and a range of other film roles in his short career, reportedly had been using the drugs to help with a busy schedule and lack of sleep. Elvis Presley died of a heart attack at age 42 on August 16, 1977. He died after taking mixture of various drugs, including codeine, Valmid and Placidyl. News reports said that his death was the culmination of years of abusing painkillers prescribed by his doctor, which also brought on various health problems later in life, including glaucoma and bowel disease. The Wizard of Oz star Judy Garland died on June 22, 1969, of an accidental barbiturate overdose at age 47. The singer and actress had been suffering for years from mental and physical health problems and reportedly had been given stimulants and depressants from an early age to help manage her filming schedule, according to PBS.
Close-up of smiling Michael Jackson who is probably waving to his fans
Michael Jackson /phot. Carlo Allegri
Michael Jakcson - The King of Pop - died on June 2009, after ingesting a cocktail of drugs including propofol, lorazepam, midazolam and diazepam, according to the BBC. His death, at age 50, was later ruled a homicide because the lethal doses were administered by his personal physician, Conrad Murray, MD. Jackson had struggled with drug abuse for years, often using prescription painkillers to offset the demands of performing and being on tour.

The list seems long.

The opioid painkillers - if you consider the last decade - have been extensively used to treat degenerative spine problems, strained kees, and even symptoms related to the eruption of wisdom teeth. The USA was drowning in opioid crisis. Doctor House's favourite - Vicodin - in the very 2016 was sold in more than 6 billion tablets. Initially destined for oncological patients the opioids were feared to cause dependence and profound side effects - psychic disturbances, respiratory disorders and some typed of constipations. In 2016, there were 63,600 drug overdose deaths in the United States - 66.4% of these (42,249 people) were cases related to opioid abuse.

Since then - there has been no retreat. Today the numbers are too difficult to be collected and properly evaluated. The opioid crisis engulfed Europe with millions of individuals hooked on them - what we could pray for would be wisdom of doctors and patients as for prescribing and as for taking these. Let's hope that the examples of the famous' problems, their senseless deaths would teach us a lesson!
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