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Revista de la Facultad de Medicina (México)

On-line version ISSN 2448-4865Print version ISSN 0026-1742


HERRERA SOLIS, Andrea et al. Poppy, beautiful poppy: opiates and opioids, utility and risks. Rev. Fac. Med. (Méx.) [online]. 2023, vol.66, n.3, pp.8-26.  Epub Sep 08, 2023. ISSN 2448-4865.

Opium and its derivatives, and recently the opioids have accompanied the humankind since the ancient civilizations to the present day. Its analgesic, hypnotic and pleasant effects did not go unnoticed by ancient people, which considered most of these effects of medical utility and noticed that they had remarkable mood benefits. Currently, there are no other kind of drugs that can palliate intense pain as efficiently as these powerful analgesics. However, the medical and recreational use of opiates and opioids may carry health risks such as tolerance, hyperalgesia, and addiction. Nowadays, in addition to being indisputably the most powerful medical treatment to alleviate the suffering caused by pain, it has also become a public health problem due to the high number of people with opioid use disorder that have facilitated deaths caused by opioids overdose. In this review we will discuss the medical benefits of opiates and opioids, as much as the unwanted effects they produce.

Keywords : Opioids; opiates; medical utility; health risks; addiction; abuse.

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