This Week in the ASAM Weekly
This week, the titles tell much of the story. All of Us (not to be confused with the hit TV drama-series This is Us)is an engaging (almost heartwarming) name for an expansive research program tasked with better understanding our diverse populations. It can improve upon data from other sources like NSDUH and NESARC by capturing groups that may be underrepresented in national surveys (PLOS ONE).
Also in the titles, the emerging fentanyl-xylazine syndemic in the US has its challenges while its future direction sees remnants of the past (The Lancet). There are increasing numbers and shifting demographics for adolescents presenting to emergency departments with OUD but outpatient capacity still remains underdeveloped (American Journal of Emergency Medicine). Both are part of a unifying problem: substance use disorder treatment falls short of the need (NEJM Catalyst).
Of course, there is much more to the story than can be conveyed in a title. A case study on the involuntary use of extended-release buprenorphine in a patient with schizophrenia is brief but full of ethical and legal considerations (JAM). Unintentional pediatric ingestion of cannabis is as much about copycats and counterfeits in the cannabis market as it is about the harms toward children (JAMA Pediatrics).
We’ll end with a title from The New York Times. Its wording could cause some to assume it’s a story about a progressive state being too progressive or maybe the use of “tries” implies “fails” because what else should a lay reader assume about “drug users."
But it’s just a title. The actual story is about contingency management and the brave steps California has taken to provide an effective treatment for stimulant use disorders.
Thanks for reading,
Nicholas Athanasiou, MD, MBA, DFASAM
Editor in Chief
with Co-Editors: Brandon Aden, MD, MPH, FASAM, Debra R. Newman, PA-C, MSPAS, MPH, Jack Woodside, MD, John A. Fromson, MD