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Chapter 6

Drugs and Behaviour - Chapter 6

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Department
Psychology
Course
PS268
Professor
Bruce Mc Kay
Semester
Winter

Description
Drugs and Behaviour – Chapter 6  Cocaine o Powerful CNS stimulant  Creates pleasure, increases alertness and decreases appetite and need for sleep o History  Traced to Inca Empire in Peru – use of coca  Drug provides them freedom from fatigue  Adding calcified lime to raise alkalinity increase extraction of cocaine  Coca was treated as money before the Spanish conquered o Coca wine  Used extract in many products  Lozenge, teas, wines  Wine  Early version of coca cola o Lifted spirits, freed them from fatigue, gave them good feeling o Local anaesthesia  Introduced cocaine as local anaesthetic for eye surgery  Freud aware of pain killing properties  Koller found tissue-numbing capabilities  Used as local anaestheticfor many different types of surgery o Early psychiatric uses  Freud studied its use as treatment medication in variety of psychiatric ailments  Recommended as treatment for morphine dependence  After a bad experience with a patient, Freud opposed used of cocaine in treatment o Legal controls on cocaine  Little concern in Canada given until end of 1960s  Peter Bourne recommended that if cocaine was used in moderation, it would not be detrimental to the body  Abuse potential of snorted cocaine lower than smoked or IV cocaine use  Before 1985, cocaine use were for higher class members of society  After mid 1980s – cocaine became cheaper, so easier access  1986 congressional elections  Cocaine use was widespread  Caused people to engage in violent behaviour  Produced unparalleled dependency, nearly impossible to overcome  Drug regulations covered by controlled drugs and substances act  Classified into schedule I o Supplies of illicit cocaine in Canada  Colombia the largest cultivator of coca bush  Peru  Bolivia  Price and availability of coca determined by local politics than by DEA’s eradication and interdiction efforts  Mexico plays a large role in transporting cocaine to Canada  Major ports of entry are in BC, ON and QC  Land mode ranked primary smuggling method  Liquid cocaine most commonly smuggled on airplanes  Pearson most frequent point of seizure  QC/ON supplies users in east coast  Cocaine from pacific distributed across west coast  Readily available across Canada 1 Drugs and Behaviour – Chapter 6  Street prices highest in Toronto o Cocaine, crime and ethnicity  Canada does not keep racial characteristics of federal cocaine offenders  Large portion of minorities incarcerated compared to Caucasian offenders  Larger proportion of black offenders incarcerated for robbery, Asians for drug related offences o Pharmacology of cocaine  Source  Best known through world because of its alkaloids, which include cocaine  2-3 metres, straight branches, thin/opaque/ovular/green tinted leaves o Small flowers  500 kg of leaves processing results in 1kg of cocaine  Chemical structure  Structure does not resemble any natural neurotransmitter  Does not help to explain how drug works on brain o Forms of cocaine  Coca leaves mixed with solvent – kerosene or gasoline  After mixing, soaking and mashing, excess liquid – coca paste  Often mixed with tobacco and smoked  Can also be made into cocaine hydrochloride – salt that can be mixes easily in water o Typically snorted  Freebasing – extracting it into a volatile organic solvent , very dangerous because combo of fire and fumes highly explosive  Mixing cocaine with household chemicals and drying it resulted in smokeable cocaine (crack/rock) o Mechanisms of action  More we learn, more complex the drug’s actions  Blocks reuptake of dopamine, norepinephrine and serotonin causing prolonged effect of these transmitters  Normal communication process  Dopamine released by neuron into synapse, bind to dopamine receptors then recycled  If cocaine present  Attaches to dopamine transporter and blocks normal recycling process  Results in buildup of dopamine in synapse, contributes to pleasurable effects of cocaine o Absorption and elimination  Chewing and sucking leaves allows it to be slowly absorbed through mucous membranes  Reslts n slower onset of effects and lower blood levels than snorting  Snorting  Intent to get fine powder on the nasal mucosa o Absorbed very rapidly and reaches brain quickly  IV – Very high concentration rapidly to brain for brief effect  Smoking is preferred as it is less invasive and onset effects just as fast o Medical use of cocaine  Occasionally used as local anaesthetic but has been replaced with less toxic substances  Local anaesthesia  Has ability to number area to which it is applied  Use of cocaine as anaesthetic because of apparent safety/effectiveness  Replaced in 1905 by procaine (Novocain)  May other local anaesthetics synthesized that have little or no ability to stimulate CNS 2 Drugs and Behaviour – Chapter 6  Cocaine is used in nasal/laryngeal and esophageal surgeries because of its ability to be absorbed quickly into mucous membranes  Other claimed benefits  Used it as a self prescription to overcome fatigue  Largest amount of cocaine users among athletes and entertainers o Causes for concern  Acute toxicity  Acute poisoning leads to profound CNS stimulation, convulsions which lead to respiratory or cardiac arrest o Similar to amphetamine overdose  Very rare/severe and unpredictable reactions where individuals die rapidly, apparently from cardiac failure  Can trigger chaotic heart rhythm  IV users may also experience allergic reaction, lungs filling with fluid and death can occur  Combination of cocaine and alcohol could create cocaethylene in body, which is more toxic o Less potent in humans with respect to cardiovascular and subjective effects  Chronic toxicity  Regular snorting and snorting cocaine that’s been mixed with another substance can irritate nasal septum and lead to inflamed/runny nose  Unsafe paraphernalia used can cuases cuts, burns, sores and wounds on/in mouth  Binge cocaine use leads to increased irritability, restlessness and paranoia  Severe cases, can cause full blown paranoid psychosis with auditory hallucinations  Can damage heart muscle itself  Dependence potential  Can produce dependence in some users, especially among people who inject or inhale vapours  Cocaine can be a powerfully reinforcing drug  No obvious physical withdrawal symptoms found when withdrawal symptoms only included physical symptoms  Withdrawal symptoms include o Cocaine craving, irritability, anxiety, depressed mood, increased appetite and exhaustion o Severity depends on dosage and purity of administered cocaine  Reproductive effects  Crack baby o No consistent negative associations between cocaine exposure and severe developmental deficits o Long term effects even less known  Not recommended during pregnancy o Spontaneous abortions o Torn placenta o Current patterns of cocaine use  Worldwide cocaine users range from 15.6 – 20.8 million people o Cocaine’s future  Cocaine use has increased since late 1980s  Amphetamines has started to emerge and shifting away from cocaine  Amphetamines o History 3 Drugs and Behaviour – Chapter 6  Chinese made tea which contained active ingredient – ephedrine  Drug used to treat asthma  Sympathomimetic drug - Stimulates the sympathetic branch of autonomic nervous system  Elevated blood pressure  Amphetamine similar to ephedrine  Synthetic CNS stimulant and sympathomimetic  Amphetamines were very strong stimulants, and enables people to stay awake  Amphetamines used to increase awake time in truck drivers o Wartime uses  Reports that Germany used this to increase efficiency of its soldiers  Used to help them stay alert and reduce fatigue  Causes paranoia, and was taken away from the front lines  Japan  Sold without prescriptions to reduce stockpiles after the war  Accompanied with overuse and abuse  Strict controls enacted and abuse problems claimed to have been eliminated o The “speed scene” of the 1960s  Most of the misuse was done through legall manufactured and purchased oral preparations  During 1920-30s, mix of cocaine and heroin = speed  Created the same effect as cocaine  Most desired drug was methamphetamine, available in liquid form for injection  Thought to be a legal substitute for heroin  Amphetamine abuse began to be recognized, and prescribed less  Within less than a decade, went from widely used/accepted pharmaceuticals to less widely used and tightly restricted  Look-a-like pills started appearing, and legal, odds were, if you bought speed from the streets, they were fakes  Cocaine trafficking increased as amphetamine supply started decreasing o The return of methamph
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