Drug abusers turn to numerous unlikely drugs to get high when their supply is not accessible or has run out. Recently, reports have increased regarding abuse of anti-diarrhea medications, including overdoses and deaths related to high level intake of the drugs. The FDA warns that the medications may cause deadly heart problems when taken at high doses. The recommended dose ranges from 8-16 milligrams. Abusers may take up to 300 milligrams to achieve heroin-like highs. Over the past 39 years, there have been 31 actual reports of hospitalizations and 10 deaths related to anti-diarrhea medication overdoses. But in recent years, these overdoses have increased 71%. Some believe it is necessary to restrict the sale of these over-the-counter medications, much like the restrictions placed on Sudafed and medications containing pseudoephedrine that can be used to produce meth. Drug abusers sometimes use these medications to wean themselves off their addiction, as well as to fuel the addiction and prevent withdrawal symptoms.
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