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Study shows rising rate of propofol abuse by health care professionals
Date:3/18/2013

Philadelphia, Pa. (March 18, 2013) Abuse of the anesthesia drug propofol is a "rapidly progressive form of substance dependence" that is being more commonly seen among health care professionals, reports a study in the April Journal of Addiction Medicine, the official journal of the American Society of Addiction Medicine. The journal is published by Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, a part of Wolters Kluwer Health.

"Propofol addiction is a virulent and debilitating form of substance dependence" with a "rapid downhill course," write Drs Paul Earley and Torin Finver of Georgia Health Professionals Program, Inc, Atlanta. Their study identifies some emerging characteristics and consequences of propofol abuse among health care professionals.

Propofol Abuse: Rates and Risk Factors

Data from an addiction center specializing in substance abuse problems among health care professionals identified 22 patients treated for propofol abuse from 1990 to 2010. Propofol is a drug widely used to induce anesthesia for surgery and sedation for other procedures. It is commonly used because it has a rapid onset and quick recovery time, with fewer side effects than other anesthetics.

The number of health care professionals treated for propofol abuse increased steadily during the period studied, although increased recognition by addiction center staff may have played a role. The patients were thirteen physicians, eight nurses, and one dentist. Most of the physicians and all of the nurses were anesthesia providers, who had ready access to propofol.

Patients using propofol were more likely to be wo
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Contact: Connie Hughes
connie.hughes@wolterskluwer.com
646-674-6348
Wolters Kluwer Health
Source:Eurekalert

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