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AOD STATS
Interactive
Data Site

Introduction: Welcome to AODstats, the Victorian alcohol and drug interactive statistics and mapping webpage.
AODstats provides information on the harms related to alcohol, illicit and pharmaceutical drug use in Victoria.

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Uncovering the therapeutic potential of CBD

New research paves the way for a new schizophrenia treatment, by testing the effect of a cannabis compound on rats. The study suggests that the cannabis-derived substance may improve schizophrenia-specific cognitive impairment, with none of the side effects that current medication has…CBD can affect learning, memory, and attention, which suggests that the compound could help manage cognitive symptoms more effectively and with fewer side effects than widely available medication.

The researchers - led by Dr. Katrina Green from the University of Wollongong, Australia - first discovered the therapeutic value of CBD when they previously conducted a review of 27 studies.

"From this review, we found that CBD will not improve learning and memory in healthy brains, but may improve aspects of learning and memory in illnesses associated with cognitive impairment, including Alzheimer's disease, as well as neurological and neuro-inflammatory disorders," explains Dr. Green.

"Evidence suggests that CBD is neuroprotective and can reduce cognitive impairment associated with use of delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the main psychoactive component of cannabis," Dr. Green adds.

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13 May 2017

‘’False hope’’ driving claims medicinal cannabis is ‘’magic pill’’ for chronic pain relief.

Prescribing medicinal cannabis for patients with chronic non-cancer pain is not going to revolutionise their treatment and should not be supported until there is substantial proof of its effectiveness, according to a leading pain specialist.

Professor Milton Cohen is presenting Medicinal cannabis for chronic non-cancer pain: promise or pothole? at the Australian and New Zealand College of Anaesthetists (ANZCA) annual scientific meeting in Brisbane on Saturday May 13.
“There is no reason to be enthusiastic about cannabinoids in the treatment of non-cancer related chronic pain,’’ Professor Cohen said.

‘‘On the basis of what we know about cannabis as a treatment it’s not going to revolutionise the field of chronic pain management.’’

Professor Cohen is a specialist pain medicine physician in Sydney and Director of Professional Affairs for ANZCA’s Faculty of Pain Medicine. The Faculty does not support the use of cannabinoids in chronic non-cancer pain ‘’until such time as a clear therapeutic role for them is identified in the scientific literature.’’

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Written by Honor Whiteman Published:19 April 2017

For individuals with a severe form of epilepsy, a new study finds that the occurrence of seizures could be significantly reduced with a daily dose of cannabidiol - a chemical component of cannabis.
Researchers say that cannabidiol - an active chemical in cannabis - could help to reduce seizures for patients with Lennox-Gastaut syndrome.

Researchers from the Ohio State University found that individuals with Lennox-Gastaut syndrome (LGS) who took cannabidiol every day for 14 weeks saw the frequency of atonic seizures fall by more than 50 percent. Atonic seizures, also known as drop seizures, involve a sudden, brief loss of muscle tone.

Study co-author Dr. Anup Patel, of the College of Medicine at Ohio State, and colleagues recently presented their findings at the American Academy of Neurology's 69th annual meeting, held in Boston, MA.

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Written by Honor Whiteman

Increased legalization of marijuana for medical purposes may be fueling illicit use of the drug, as well as increasing the number marijuana use disorders, according to the results of a new study.
Researchers have identified a greater increase in illicit marijuana use and disorders in states that have legalized medical marijuana.

An analysis of data from three national surveys in the United States revealed a higher increase in illicit marijuana use and marijuana use disorders in states that had passed medical marijuana laws (MMLs), compared with states that have not legalized medical marijuana.

Study co-author Deborah Hasin, Ph.D., of the Mailman School of Public Health and the Department of Psychiatry at Columbia University Medical Center in New York, and colleagues say that their findings suggest that changing state marijuana laws may have serious consequences for public health.

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Deborah S. Hasin, PhD1,2,3Aaron L. Sarvet, MPH1,2Magdalena Cerdá, DrPH4; et alKatherine M. Keyes, PhD1,3Malka Stohl, MS2Sandro Galea, MD, DrPH5Melanie M. Wall, PhD1,2,6

JAMA Psychiatry. Published online April 26, 2017. doi:10.1001/jamapsychiatry.2017.0724

Question  Are US state medical marijuana laws one of the underlying factors for increases in risk for adult cannabis use and cannabis use disorders seen since the early 1990s?

Findings  In this analysis using US national survey data collected in 1991-1992, 2001-2002, and 2012-2013 from 118 497 participants, the risk for cannabis use and cannabis use disorders increased at a significantly greater rate in states that passed medical marijuana laws than in states that did not.

Meaning  Possible adverse consequences of illicit cannabis use due to more permissive state cannabis laws should receive consideration by voters, legislators, and policy and health care professionals, with appropriate health care planning as such laws change.

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