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Cocaine and amphetamines

Cocaine and amphetamines - Ch 7 Cocaine and amphetamines...

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Ch. 7: Cocaine and amphetamines - powerful psychostimulants, primarily affect dopamine action - action on nucleus accumbens and limbic structures makes them highly abused - low doses cause response similar to acute stress response (like fight or flight prep) - side effects: anxiety, insomnia, irritability, and increase with dose Cocaine - functioned as local anesthesia around 1880-1920 - unregulated, so also used in patent medicines (and Coca-Cola) around this time - “crack” cocaine came about in late 1970s, early 80s; smoked not injected - users inject or smoke or snort - “crack” is most popular; name comes from sound made by crystals popping when smoked - ‘lines’ of cocaine ~25 mg; smoking crack cocaine can be 250 mg-1g at a time - cocaine is a vasoconstrictor, so snorting actually limits its own absorption - metabolized by enzymes in plasma and liver; removed slower from brain than plasma - metabolites can be detected 48 hrs in acute users, up to 2 weeks in chronic users - Cocaethylene is produced in body from using cocaine and alcohol; its effects are euphoric like cocaine, and its metabolite is more toxic and longer-lasting - 3 actions: 1-local anesthetic, 2-vasoconstrictor, 3-highly reinforcing psychostimulant - neurotransmitter-potentiation (dopamine, norepinephrine and seratonin) by blocking reuptake, so more stays in synaptic cleft - Low dose effects: alertness, motor hyperactivity, vasoconstriction, hypertension, pupil dilation, increased body temperature, euphoria, giddiness, enhanced self- consciousness, forceful boastfulness - Intoxication effects: rapid thoughts, pressured speech, promotes craving for more - Higher doses give similar effects but more intense. As drug wears off, depression, anxiety, drug crazing, and sometimes seizures may result - Long-term high dose use can cause “toxic paranoid psychosis” - Typically, dependent people are under 40, male, also alcohol-dependent, have psychopathology (depression, anxiety, etc.) and have other drug dependencies
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