Papers And Originals

Poppy Capsule Dependence

Br Med J 1972; 1 doi: (Published 19 February 1972) Cite this as: Br Med J 1972;1:480
  1. Selwyn M. Smith,
  2. Iain Burnside


    Nine poppy-head addicts were seen at a Birmingham hospital. Seven were Sikhs born in Jullundur and two were West Pakistanis. Most began their poppy-head addiction in their early 20s, usually out of curiosity or to relieve the hangover effects of alcohol. Only two took opium in addition and one of these had taken cannabis, morphine, and heroin. They all drank several pints of beer a day and were heavy smokers. All had had little schooling and married young. Most of them were industrious foundry workers in good physical health. Withdrawal of poppy capsules failed in each case. The present situation whereby an addictive drug is readily imported and sold in local shops is questioned.