Cocaine is the most commonly abused illicit drug Dr. G encounters in the morgue. Here she shares the killer effects of cocaine use on the body and mind:
|Body Systems and Organs Affected||Complications|
|Cardiovascular||Sudden cardiac death with as little at 20 mg; heart attack, rupture of the aorta, irregularities in the heart's rhythm, cardiomyopathy (disease of the heart muscle), high blood pressure|
|Neurological||Stroke, inflammation of blood vessels in the brain, headache, bleeding in the brain, seizures, and partial or complete loss of consciousness|
|Pulmonary||Chronic cough, lung irritation, collapsed lungs, pulmonary edema or hemorrhage, lung inflammation|
|Ear, nose, and throat||Hoarseness, destruction of nasal structures, colds, and sinusitis|
|Psychiatric||Anxiety, agitation, delirium, paranoia, suicide, severe depression, violent behavior|
|Infectious complications||AIDS (via contaminated needles), endocarditis (bacterial infection of the heart valves), tetanus, viral hepatitis due to IV use|
|Other||Hyperthermia (unusually high body temperature), muscle injury, kidney failure, intermittent loss of feeling in the extremities, tremors, intestinal ischemia (death of part of the intestine due to loss of blood)|
Excerpted from How Not to Die by Jan Garavaglia, M.D.
Copyright © 2008 by Atlas Media Corp. and Jan Garavaglia, M.D.
Permission granted by Crown Publishers, New York, NY