The Side Effects Of Drugs Have Urged Patients As Well As

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The side effects of drugs have urged patients as well as researchers to seek safer alternatives. It is estimated that more than 30% of patients in the US are using or have used herbal remedies at some point. Chronic pain patients are no exception to this since the long term use of opioid analgesics for chronic pain has caused increased cases of opiate tolerance and addiction. Therefore, it is just a matter of time before patients need a larger dose of analgesics to maintain the same level of pain reduction. Some of the 40 million American patients with chronic pain resorted to kratom, a medicinal herb, available through internet vendors or smoke shops. Kratom is used for self-management of pain and to avert the opioid withdrawal…show more content…
It was found that kratom is made up of more than 20 alkaloids. The exact composition depends on the geography where the plant was grown. The most important alkaloids that cause the opioid-like analgesic activity are mitragynine and 7-hydroxymitragynine since they bind with the opioid receptors.. Mitragynine is the most abundant alkaloid in kratom. 7-hydroxymitragynine is a minor component that is more potent and can penetrate blood brain barrier more than mitragynine. It is believed that 7-hydroxymitragynine is 13-fold more potent than morphine. Mitragynine was first isolated 87 years ago and scientists are still not able to totally synthesize it in the laboratory. All the mitragynine used by individuals or researchers is extracted from the leaves of the Mitragyna speciosa plant.

The striking increased prevalence of kratom use in the west is indicated by the number of forums and groups dedicated to kratom such as (The Kratom Forum, Kratom Online, Kratom Science) which include tips about using kratom, suggested suppliers and personal stories of using kratom. Most cases of kratom use are not reported since kratom has minimal acute toxicity. However, one reported case of an individual who used kratom to avert withdrawal symptoms of daily 10mg subcutaneous hydromorphone. The patient described pain relief and improved alertness compared to opiates. Upon sudden cessation of kratom, he

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