Cocaine dependence: symptoms and methods of treatment
Cocaine is a narcotic substance extracted from coca leaves.The plant is widespread in the countries of South America, mainly in Bolivia and Peru.In the XIX century, a pure alkaloid-cocaine-was isolated from the coca leaves.It turned out that the substance has a narcotic effect.Because of this, cocaine soon spread throughout the world.Contents: From the history of the occurrence of cocaine addiction Cocaine varieties Signs of cocaine use Consequences of cocaine use Treatment of cocaine addiction
From the history of the occurrence of cocaine addiction
Chewing cocci leaves as a stimulant was historically common among the aborigines of South America.It is noteworthy that the plant leaves themselves contain a pure alkaloid of cocaine in a relatively small amount.The gradual absorption of alkaloids into the blood during the chewing of leaves and its rapid destruction by the liver does not allow the development of a pronounced narcotic effect.Therefore, chewing cocci leaves in Latin America has never been an acute medical or public problem.
The history of the spread of cocaine in Europe dates back to the second half of the XIX century, when a German chemist synthesized from a coca leaf a pure alkaloid and gave it the name "cocaine". Thanks to analgesic, as well as stimulating effects on the nervous system, the substance has been actively used in medicine.However, it was soon discovered that cocaine was not harmless at all, causing addiction, as well as various painful effects. Cocaine began to be used by people not for medical reasons, but with a view to "rest".So cocaine addiction captured the whole world.
This type of drug addiction is common in South and North America because of the proximity of countries that grow coca. In the CIS countries, cocaine is much less common.This is explained by the high cost of the drug, due to which not every addict can try this substance.As a rule, "golden youth" is ill with cocaine addiction, which has access and money to a similar kind of prohibited substances.
Cocaine is considered a drug of psychostimulating action.The clinical manifestations of cocaine depend not least on the form of the drug, as well as the way it is administered. The most common form is cocaine hydrochloride.It is a white powder that looks like snow.Cocaine hydrochloride is used by inhalation through the nose.And the narcotic substance is quickly absorbed and penetrates into the blood.Very rarely, cocaine hydrochloride is administered intravenously.With this method of administration, the effect of the drug is negligible.
Coca paste is the first intermediate product of coca leaf treatment in the process of producing cocaine hydrochloride.It contains less cocaine, as well as other alkaloids.By means of certain manipulations from cocaine, an alkaloid - benzoylmethylengonine is extracted.This narcotic substance was called "crack", which is consumed by smoking.
The most dangerous form is speedball - a mixture of crack and heroin.The danger of using this drug lies in the cross-reaction between the opiate narcotic and the psychostimulant-cocaine.Such a dangerous mixture leads to severe disorders, in particular in the work of the heart system.
When cocaine is inhaled, the narcotic effect occurs after five to ten minutes and its peak reaches half an hour later, during the next half hour the symptoms gradually decrease.When smoking cracks or injecting cocaine, signs of intoxication begin already in the first seconds, reaching a maximum peak after five minutes.
Cocaine abuse is characterized by so-called cocaine episodes, when the patient inhales through his nose every half hour new portions of cocaine to preserve a sense of euphoria. Typically, the cocaine episode lasts about 12 hours, but it can stretch for a few days.Such "drinking" leads to the depletion of neurotransmitters.Therefore, the mood becomes very changeable.
With the continuous use of cocaine, the euphorizing effect of the drug is completely lost, that is, it is not euphoria that develops, but depression. At the end of the cocaine episode, the patient falls into a dream, which can last several days.After awakening patients often suicidal suicidal thoughts.
Signs of cocaine use
The effects of cocaine use on medics have been conventionally divided into central and peripheral.Central effects are those phenomena that arise as a result of the drug's effect on the nervous system.After consuming cocaine, a person feels a surge of energy, a feeling of bliss, euphoria. Drug addicts describing this state, speak of an uplifting mood, it seems as if everything is now theirs.A person becomes talkative, hyperactive.Also noted is the increased sexual desire of . These are all so-called central effects.
Peripheral effects are caused by the effects of the drug on various organs. To peripheral effects include:
- Dry mouth;
- Excessive sweating;
- Enlarged pupils;
- Tremor of limbs;
- Heart palpitations;
- Increased blood pressure;
- Nausea, vomiting.
It is noteworthy that after the cessation of cocaine, the mood does not return to normal. On the contrary, after euphoria, the mood worsens, anxiety, irritability and even complete apathy appear.
With pronounced cocaine intoxication, manic-like mental disorders develop. The person is impulsive and excited, does not report his actions.This state often leads to criminal behavior.
When consuming large doses of cocaine, euphoria is accompanied by anxiety and fear of the impending death of .Also there are such phenomena as dizziness, muscle twitching.
Consequences of cocaine use
Cocaine use is fraught with the development of psychoses. Psychosis begins, as a rule, with the emergence of ideas of persecution, hallucinations soon join.The patient becomes aggressive, behaves inappropriately, destroys surrounding objects, somewhere runs away.In the case of , the development of cocaine delirium is likely to lead to sudden death from cardiac or respiratory failure.
Chronic cocaine use inevitably affects the somatic state of the patient. Cocaine mania leads to such consequences:
- Sexual dysfunction;
- Constant rhinitis, nasal bleeding;
- Roughness of voice;
- Difficulty swallowing;
- Arterial hypertension;
- Heart attack( arrhythmia, myocardial infarction, myocarditis);Intracerebral hemorrhage, stroke.
Prolonged use of cocaine leads to mental disorders. The mood of a drug addict is stably depressive, thinking slows down, panic attacks may occur.A person loses volitional qualities, is not able to concentrate attention, which leads to a progressive decline in efficiency.
Treatment of cocaine dependence
Treatment of cocaine dependence is carried out in several stages.At the first stage in a hospital, cocaine intoxication is eliminated with the help of medications.After that, they start to eliminate the complications that have arisen, and also to eliminate the attraction to the drug.The final stage is the implementation of anti-relapse treatment with the help of psychotherapy, which helps to consolidate the result and prevent disruptions.
Grigorova Valeria, medical reviewer