drugs

Feuding motorcycle gangs have made national headlines after Sunday's deadly fight in Waco, Texas. On this edition of Up To Date, reporter Sam Zeff speaks with Steve Cook, who's with the Midwest Outlaw Motorcycle Gang Investigators Association, about motorcycle clubs in the Kansas City area. 

Alex Smith / Heartland Health Monitor

Glenn Helverson has a job that’s all about speed.

For most of the last 25 years he’s been a driver with the Central Jackson County Fire Protection District. But he’s been slowed down at times by a health issue that appeared at an early age.

“I think I first noticed signs of arthritis when I was eighteen,” Helverson says.

Today his rheumatoid arthritis pain is kept at bay with a new-generation injectable drug called Cimzia.

“Without the medications I’ve had, I probably would’ve already been retired with disability,” he says.

Legislators heard emotional testimony Thursday from an Emporia woman about a bill to allow access to drugs in preliminary federal testing.

They also heard questions about whether the “Right to Try” legislation is sound policy or an ideological quest that will give terminal patients false hope.

Versions of “Right to Try” have passed in Missouri, Colorado, Arizona, Michigan and Louisiana.

Law enforcement dogs these days can do some incredible things: sniffing out the chemicals used to start an arson fire, getting illegal drugs off our streets, or finding evidence in shootings and explosives investigations.

On this edition of Up to Date, host Steve Kraske meets three law enforcement dogs, and their handlers, to find out what it takes for a dog to become a key part of a law enforcement team.

Roxi 

Alex Smith / KCUR

Missouri has a distinction that troubles many involved in public health: It's the only state in the country that does not monitor prescription drugs.

Some say that heightens the problem of prescription drug abuse.

Missouri legislators are trying to create a drug monitoring system, but concerns over privacy have stirred opposition.

Rising abuse

Google Commons

A doctor looking to help a patient prescribes a medication for a condition it was not originally marketed to treat. How legal, and how risky the off-label use of prescription drugs?On Thursday's Up To Date  Steve Kraske talks with a pharmacist about just how common this practice is among physicians and why drug companies don’t market their products for multiple uses.  

Guest:

Rick Couldry is Director of Pharmacy at the University of Kansas Hospital. 

The tragic death of actor and director Philip Seymour Hoffman has shed light on heroin and opiate use in America. Right here in Kansas City, opiate-based drugs are more popular than ever and the results have been devastating. Central Standard takes a look at why Kansas and Missouri residents are using these lethal substances and what impact heroin addiction has had on one local family.

Guests:

Addiction

Dec 2, 2012
Miles Cave / flickr

The holidays are a time to gather with friends and family in cheer.  The holidays also are a time of high stress and anxiety which can lead to addictive behaviors.


Kansas City Star

As head of one of the most successful drug operations, Alejandro Corredor moved hundreds of pounds of cocaine, meth, and marijuana from Mexico through Kansas City.

Baseball’s Willie Mays Aikens has done a lot of living in his 57 years.  He’s now a hitting instructor for the Kansas City Royals, something he knows a thing or two about: he was the first major leaguer in history to hit two home runs in a game twice in the same series.

The Race To Create The Best Antiviral Drugs

Apr 17, 2012

If you've ever had a bacterial infection like staph or strep throat, your doctor may have prescribed penicillin. But if you've had the flu or a common cold virus, penicillin won't work. That's because antibacterials only kill bacteria, and both the flu and the common cold are viruses. So for illnesses like the flu, doctors prescribe antiviral drugs, which target the mechanisms that viruses use to reproduce.

Tens of millions of Americans turn to powerful painkillers to ease their sufferings. But an analysis on the sales of two prescription drugs over a decade is particularly worrisome.

Check out The Associated Press' interactive map at the end of this post. It uses data from the Drug Enforcement Agency to show how sales of oxycodone and hydrocodone ballooned from 2000-10.

You can click on individual states to see which areas had the biggest increases.

U.S. spending on prescription drugs grew just barely in 2011, according to the annual report from IMS Health, which keeps track of these things.

But the reason for the barely discernible increase of 0.5 percent, to $320 billion, was not the expected one.

More Fake Cancer Drugs Found In The U.S.

Apr 4, 2012

Another batch of phony cancer drugs has made its way into the U.S., the Food and Drug Administration says.

U.S.-based medical practices purchased vials of counterfeit medicine labeled as Altuzan from a foreign supplier, FDA spokesperson Shelly Burgess tells Shots. She said the agency doesn't have any reports of patients having received the counterfeit drugs.

Altuzan is the Turkish brand name for Avastin, the FDA-approved blockbuster cancer drug from Swiss drugmaker Roche's Genentech unit. Altuzan is approved for use in Turkey — but not in the U.S.

New insights about the development of ALS, or Lou Gehrig's disease, can help explain what causes nerve- and muscle-cell failure in sufferers, and researchers hope the new knowledge will help design drugs to combat the disease.

Kansas lawmakers have sent the governor a bill strengthening the penalties for those who sell drugs to kids, or expose them to the hazards of meth labs.

Synthetic Marijuana Ban Moves Forward in Missouri House, Senate

Mar 16, 2010

Jefferson City, Mo. – The Missouri House gave initial approval Monday to a ban on a widely available chemical that attempts to mimic the effects of marijuana. The measure would ban synthetic compounds that are sprayed on dried herbs and flowers to give users a marijuana-like high.

House members rejected an amendment legalizing medical marijuana in the state. An amendment to require prescriptions for a decongestant used to make methamphetamine also was rejected.