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The Top Alcohol and Drug Stories of 2010

New Treatment Drug a Game Changer?


Updated February 14, 2014

The top alcohol and drug-related news stories of 2010 include a new drug approved for the treatment of opiate addiction, a crackdown on alcohol energy drinks, a new pain pill more difficult to abuse and a new face for a long-time anti-drug organization.

1. FDA Approves Vivitrol for Opioid Addiction Treatment

© Alkermes, Inc.

When the FDA approved a new, once-a-month medication for the treatment of opiate addiction, it was hailed by experts as a possible game-changer in the effort to combat the growing problem of prescription drug abuse in the U.S.

2. Alcohol Named the Most Harmful Drug

Beer Cans

When you consider the harm that alcohol does to drinkers, to those around around them and to society in general, it is by far the world's most dangerous drugs, according to a panel of experts who rated 20 commonly abused drugs.

3. Alcohol Energy Drinks Under Fire

Four Loko Alcohol Energy Drink
© Getty Images
A rash of hospitalizations of young people drinking large cans of alcohol energy drinks, known as a "Blackout in a Can," caused state and federal officials to begin taking a close look at the possible safety hazards of drinks like Four Loko.

4. New OxyContin Pill Harder to Abuse?

The makers of Oxycontin came out with a new version of the pain pill that is supposedly more difficult to abuse, but the FDA wants more proof it's harder to abuse and users of medication question that it is even the same medication.

5. Anti-Drug Partnership Gets a New Face

Melissa Gilbert Partnership at Drugfree.org
© Getty Images
Now called The Parnership at Drugfree.org, the group who brought you the fried-egg "this is your brain on drugs" television commercials, now has a new name, a new celebrity spokesperson and a redesigned website.

6. CDC Reports Ecstasy Overdose 'Clusters' at Raves

The CDC issued a report that indicates that ecstasy overdose can and does happen, even in clusters at all night dance parties known as raves. It is particularly dangerous when mixed with alcohol and other drugs.

7. Baby Boomers' Treatment Needs May Double

Senior Woman
© PhotoXpress.com
By the year 2020, the need for alcohol and drug treatment services for older adults could double in the U.S. as the Baby Boomers - still using illicit drugs and abusing prescription drugs - grow toward retirement age.

8. 1.2 Million People in Alcohol or Drug Treatment

Woman Passed Out
© BigStockPhoto.com
An estminated 1.2 million people are receiving some kind of substance abuse treatment at any given time in the United States, according to a survey of more than 13,000 professional treatment and rehabilitation facilities.

9. K2: Something Else for Parents to Worry About

K2 Blonde
Although it is legal in most places, health officials and parents alike have begun to question just how safe herbal products like K2, also known as "fake weed," are for teens who think it's safe to smoke.

10. Colleges Failing at Curbing Binge Drinking

Beer Bottle
A new report reveals that most college are falling way short in their efforts to try to curb dangerous binge drinking among their students and, in fact, many schools have no idea what works and what doesn't.
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