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Snorting cocaine increases risk of stroke by six to seven times

Saturday, March 01, 2014 by: L.J. Devon, Staff Writer
Tags: cocaine, ischemic stroke, illicit drugs

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(NaturalNews) When research scientist Yu-Ching Cheng, Ph.D., from the Baltimore Veterans Affairs Medical Center set out to study the factors contributing to stroke risk in young adults, he came across some very aggressive statistics.

Cocaine is more aggressive than thought, increasing risk of stroke six to seven times in a 24-hour window

After researching typical stroke risk factors like personal behavior, diet, medical, and environmental factors, he found that the greatest risk of stroke for young adults comes in the form of cocaine. In fact, his research, presented at the American Stroke Association's International Stroke Conference 2014, showed that snorting cocaine increases ischemic stroke risk six to seven times within a 24-hour window. (An ischemic stroke happens when the blood vessels carrying blood into the brain are suddenly blocked.)

"Cocaine use is one of the risk factors we investigated and we were surprised at how strong an association there is between cocaine and stroke risk in young adults," says Yu-Ching Cheng. "We found the stroke risk associated with acute cocaine use is much higher than some other stroke risk factors, such as diabetes, high blood pressure and smoking."

Both genders, all ethnicities affected the same as cocaine blocks blood supply to the brain

His research investigated the medical records of 1,101 people between 15 and 49 years old living in the Baltimore and Washington, DC, area. The participants had recorded strokes between the years 1991 and 2008. Another 1,154 people in the same age group, having no strokes during that time, were compared with the stroke group.

At least 26 percent of the participants in both groups showed a history of cocaine use. The numbers were twice as high for men in both groups.

The findings were valuable in understanding cocaine's aggressive effect on humans. The researchers found no association between ischemic stroke and a history of cocaine use. (The drug did not increase a person's chance of stroke later in life.)

Instead, the researchers found that, within 24 hours after acute cocaine use, the risk of having a stroke increases across the board, encompassing both genders and all ethnicities.

The study shows the aggressive effects of cocaine within 24 hours of use, including how participants were six to seven times more likely to lose blood flow to the brain in that short window of time.

"Cocaine is not only addictive, it can also lead to disability or death from stroke," Cheng said. "With few exceptions, we believe every young stroke patient should be screened for drug abuse at the time of hospital admission.

"Despite the strong stroke risk associated with acute cocaine use, in our study only about one-third of young stroke patients had toxicology screenings done during hospitalization. We think the percentage of cocaine use could be higher than we've reported."

Federal Drug Enforcement Agency classifies cocaine as Schedule II drug, safer than cannabis

One of the strangest facts about cocaine is that the federal DEA in America classifies it as safer than cannabis. Cocaine is a Schedule II drug, while marijuana is ranked most dangerous at Schedule I.

If this schedule was accurate and based on real science and real dangers posed, then the DEA would need to prove that cannabis can also cause strokes within a 24-hour period of use like cocaine does. Actually, the DEA needs to prove that cannabis is more deadly and more addictive than cocaine, which is absolutely impossible.

It seems as if the DEA has their priorities crossed, as if they thrive on being macho, controlling army men. It's as if they are on drugs themselves, or dumbed down by propaganda, fluoride and heavy metals that make them cognitively deficient, unable to reason. Even psychotic drugs like Xanax, which are much "safer" Schedule V drugs, according to the DEA, cause suicidal tendencies and violent behavior. With these known facts, these pharmaceutical drugs should be listed as more dangerous than marijuana, but the federal government knows best, so why question, right?

Or maybe it's time to reevaluate the drug war and get some priorities straight?

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