Monday, 6 September 2010

Amphetamine users 40 times higher chance of brain lesions: study

All too frequently, the Family Law Courts see tragic cases involving the use of drugs. Often those taking drugs deny that they are taking them, or minimise their impact. A recent pilot study, published in the Medical Journal of Australia, undertaken by doctors in Perth has highlighted the risks of taking amphetamines and marijuana. The study shows a 40 times higher chance of amphetamine users ending up with brain lesions than those who did not take drugs.

The study covered 30 users, with an average age of 27,  who took ice, speed or ecstasy. Of the 30 users:
  • 26 used marijuana
  • 23 used ecstasy
  • 16 used ice
  • 9 used speed 
  • the average age they started using amphetamines was 18
  • 6 or 1 in 5 had a brain lesion
  • 23 of the users were serious users and 5 of those had brain abnormalities.
By contrast, another study showed that similar brain abnormalities for people of a similar age occurred for 5 tested in a thousand, or 40 times less.

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