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Amphetamines (Street)

CNS stimulants, used by youngsters to increase academic performance Can cause psychosis similar to paranoid schizophrenia
  • Amphetamine is a powerful CNS stimulator. It acts on norepinephrine release in brain, along with an action on release of dopamine and serotonin. Amphetamine abuse may cause: -
  1. Acute intoxication: - Symptoms of acute intoxication are: -
    1. Cardiovascular: - Tachycardia, hypertension, Cardiac failure, Cardiovascular shock.
    2. CNS: - Euphoria, seizures, hyperpyrexia, tremors, ataxia, pupillary dilatation.
    3. Neuropsychiatric:- Anxiety, panic, insomnia, restlessness, irritability.
    4. Paranoid hallucinatory syndrome: - Closely mimics paranoid schizophrenia. It is also known as amphetamine psychosis. There may be idea of reference, delusion of persecution (AIlMS09), Auditory visual hallucination in a setting of clear consciousness.
  2. Chronic abuse: It causes
    1. Severe and compulsive craving for the drug.
    2. Cycle of 'runs' (heavy use for several days) followed by 'Crashes' (stopping the drug use).
    3. Tactile hallucination (formination).

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