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Research Suggests Antibiotics May Increase Risk for Opioid Abuse

A study published in eNeuro suggests taking antibiotics with opioids may increase the risk of opioid abuse.

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A study published in eNeuro suggests taking antibiotics with opioids may increase the risk of opioid abuse. As described in the paper, “Depletion of the Microbiome Alters the Recruitment of Neuronal Ensembles of Oxycodone Intoxication and Withdrawal,” researchers administered antibiotics to rats for two weeks to deplete their gut-microbiome before giving them oxycodone. When the team compared them to rats that only received oxycodone, they found the microbiome-depleted subjects showed “profound changes” in how their brains responded to the opioid. According to the study, these rats showed altered opioid sensitivity in brain areas implicated in addiction. In essence, the depleted microbiome exacerbated the effects of intoxication and weakened the effects of withdrawal.

From Decisions in Dentistry. June 2020;6(6):7.

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