Mephedron, new kid for the chop?

King's College London, Department of Addictions, Institute of Psychiatry, London, UK.
Addiction (Impact Factor: 4.74). 01/2011; 106(1):154-61. DOI: 10.1111/j.1360-0443.2010.03130.x
Source: PubMed


Mephedrone (4-methylmethcathinone) is a novel synthetic stimulant drug that has recently become popular in the United Kingdom and elsewhere in Europe. It has a short history of human consumption and little is known about its prevalence and pattern of use. This study aimed to obtain preliminary data on its use and effects among dance drug users in the United Kingdom.
  Cross-sectional anonymous online survey of mephedrone recruited as part of larger study exploring patterns of drug use among those associated with the dance music scene. Setting  UK-based dance music and clubbing website.
A total of 947 ever users of mephedrone recruited as part of a wider study on dance drug use patterns.
Assessment of demographics, ever and current drug use and patterns and selected effects following use of mephedrone.
A total of 947 (41.3%) of 2295 participants reported ever having used mephedrone. Mephedrone was the sixth most frequently used drug in the last month after tobacco, alcohol, cannabis, cocaine and 3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA). Users were typically younger (P < 0.001) and male (P < 0.01); 15.1% reported using weekly or more frequently; 49.5% reported using between 0.5 and 1 g during a typical session; 69.5% reported that intranasal use was the most common route of use. Intranasal use was associated with increased abuse liability; 54.6% of those who have also used cocaine reported that the quality of the high obtained with mephedrone was better, with those using intranasally being significantly more likely than those who took the drug orally to report that mephedrone was more addictive (P < 0.02) and more risky (P < 0.02) than cocaine. Route of use was unrelated to any stimulant-related adverse effect apart from palpitations (P < 0.005).
Mephedrone appears to be used primarily intranasally and to have comparable abuse potential to cocaine, with more than half those who use both reporting that mephedrone gives a better quality high.

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    • "Some toxicological and social research has highlighted the potential health risks associated with mephedrone use, particularly around toxicity, compulsive use and adverse side effects, including painful nasal passages, hot flushes, loss of appetite, nausea, and insomnia (ACMD, 2010; Dargan et al., 2010; Deluca et al., 2009; EMCDDA, 2011; James et al., 2011; Winstock et al., 2011; Wood, Measham, & Dargan, 2012). Long-term effects are merely speculated upon and existing knowledge is based on a range of sources which include anything from hospital admission records to information posted through online drug forums. "

    • "Several studies have also shown that cardiovascular and central nervous system (CNS) effects of mephedrone are related to its stimulation of the catecholaminergic system, which can lead to severe acute intoxication and high risk of fatal consequences (Meltzer et al., 2006; Durham, 2011). Withdrawal effects following mephedrone use most frequently include tiredness, insomnia, nasal congestion and impaired concentration (Winstock et al., 2011). "
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    ABSTRACT: Mephedrone is a stimulant drug chemically related to amphetamine, with effects similar to those of amphetamine and cocaine. This study aims to analyse fatalities following ingestion of mephedrone in the UK amongst 16- to 24-year-olds in 2009-2013, providing an update on data presented at the 2nd International Conference on Novel Psychoactive Substances. A literature search was undertaken to identify published information on pharmacology, toxicity and fatalities associated with mephedrone. Fatalities involving mephedrone were extracted from the National Programme on Substance Abuse Deaths database, which receives information on drug-related deaths from coroners in the UK and Islands and other data suppliers. Selection criteria are as follows: deceased aged 16-24 years at time of death and mephedrone directly implicated in the cause of death and/or mentioned in the coroner's verdict. Thirty cases met the study criteria, and when known, all were of White ethnicity, most (85%) had a history of drug use and 73% were male. Two-thirds (63%) were accidental poisonings. Mephedrone was used with other substances in most cases (87%); other substances were implicated in 60% of deaths. Mephedrone use can have potentially fatal consequences, especially in combination with other substances. Deaths from its use in the 16-24 years' age group continue to occur in the UK, despite it being a controlled drug. Health professionals and potential consumers should be alert to this risk. Copyright © 2015 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. Copyright © 2015 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
    Human Psychopharmacology Clinical and Experimental 07/2015; 30(4):225-32. DOI:10.1002/hup.2423 · 2.19 Impact Factor
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    • "The result that injectors use significantly higher self - reported doses of mephedrone than non - injectors might be because of the relatively short duration of mephedrone ' s effects ( e . g . Psychonaut Web Mapping Research Group , 2009 ; Winstock et al . , 2011a ) , which may increase the risk of repeating the injection at higher doses than those observed in case of oral and intranasal administration ( e . g . Lea et al . , 2011 ; Winstock et al . , 2011a ; Winstock et al . , 2011b ; Van Hout and Bingham , 2012 ) . Concerning fre - quency of use , the DrugScope survey ( 2012 ) shows that intrav"
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    ABSTRACT: In recent years, increasing intravenous mephedrone use was reported in several countries. The aim of this study was to describe the characteristics of such a form of mephedrone use, while identifying the differences between injectors and non-injectors in patterns of mephedrone use and psychiatric symptom status. One hundred and forty-five mephedrone users were surveyed on patterns of mephedrone use using a structured questionnaire as well as the Brief Symptom Inventory. Majority of users received mephedrone from acquaintances and used it in discos/parties settings regarding both first and current mephedrone use. Intranasal use was the most typical route of administration (84.4%). Injectors (11%) used the drug more frequently and in higher dosages. This group included a greater proportion of opiate users (37.5%) and showed more diffuse psychiatric symptoms. Regarding the predictors of being an injector, heroin use showed the highest odds ratio. Intravenous mephedrone use is associated with a higher risk of harmful drug use, elevated psychiatric symptom profile and increased possibility of mephedrone being considered as an addictive substance. These findings might be important in efficient treatment planning. Copyright © 2015 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. Copyright © 2015 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
    Human Psychopharmacology Clinical and Experimental 07/2015; 30(4):233-43. DOI:10.1002/hup.2490 · 2.19 Impact Factor
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