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Inhalant abuse by adolescents: A new challenge for Indian physicians

Author(s): Basu Debasish | Jhirwal Om | Singh Jaspreet | Kumar Suresh | Mattoo Surendra

Journal: Indian Journal of Medical Sciences
ISSN 0019-5359

Volume: 58;
Issue: 6;
Start page: 245;
Date: 2004;
Original page

Keywords: Inhalant dependence; substance-related disorders; Indian studies

Inhalant abuse has been commonly reported especially in the young during the last decades globally. The reason for the relative paucity of literature from India may be attributed to a lack of knowledge about this growing problem among health professionals. A series of five cases of inhalant abuse is described in order to understand this growing public health concern. Most of the cases started inhalant abuse during adolescence. All patients except one abused typewriter erasing fluid and thinner which contains toluene. All the patients reported using inhalants as addictive substance because of their easy accessibility, cheap price, their faster onset of action and the regular ′high′ that it provided. Whereas several features of inhalant dependence were fulfilled, no physical withdrawal signs were observed. The diagnosis of inhalant abuse can be difficult and relies almost entirely on clinical judgment. Treatment is generally supportive.
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