Cocaine – Drugs of Abuse

by Pravin Shukle, MD

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    Cocaine comes under a lot of names and I'm sure you're very familiar with it already "Blow", "Snow", "Snort", "Super-speed", all kinds of names for cocaine. It's a very commonly used drug in the older category of people, around 40, 45 years old. It's an inhibitor of CNS transporters, so, dopamine, norepinepherine and serotonin. It is a very short lived kind of product or drug. It gives short lived euphoria, short lived self confidence and actually does contribute to some mental alertness, which is why it tends to be a performance enhancer in those people who are in high risk (inaudible) like stock brokers and business people who want to stay awake for a long time. Overdoses are very common with cocaine. This results in seizures, respiratory depression. Now, the reason why cocaine has such a variable effect on people is because it is usually snorted. When you snort cocaine, you cause intense vasoconstriction of the blood vessels. But in those patients who don't have a lot of vasoconstriction, these people are going to have more toxic effects. That's why cocaine is hard to predict in terms of how you will get sick from it. Cardiac toxicity is very common. And on more than one occasion, I've had to treat an arrhythmia brought about by cocaine. It blocks norepinepherine uptake, so that the norepinepherine is in the synaptic cleft for a very long time, which is why they tend to be very tachycardic, hypertensive and they do have increased cardiac contractile function. As I said before, it's a potent vasoconstrictor. This can lead to peripheral hypertension. It can lead to MI's and it can lead to strokes. In terms of cocaine use in pregnancy, there's a significant increase in fetal mortality and morbidity. And you'll also get fetal cortical cystic...

    About the Lecture

    The lecture Cocaine – Drugs of Abuse by Pravin Shukle, MD is from the course Toxicology. It contains the following chapters:

    • Cocaine
    • Crack Cocaine

    Included Quiz Questions

    1. Acetylcholine
    2. Dopamine
    3. Serotonin
    4. Norepinephrine
    5. 5-hydroxytryptamine
    1. Parasitosis
    2. Proptosis
    3. Parotiditis
    4. Lichen Planus
    5. Acne Vulgaris

    Author of lecture Cocaine – Drugs of Abuse

     Pravin Shukle, MD

    Pravin Shukle, MD

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