Views & Reviews From the Frontline

Reefer madness: doctors need more drugs training

BMJ 2013; 346 doi: (Published 27 June 2013) Cite this as: BMJ 2013;346:f4105
  1. Des Spence, general practitioner, Glasgow
  1. destwo{at}

I drank and smoked at school age. Others picked and took magic mushrooms. Later, when I worked in a pub, some staff always got stoned in the beer cellar, much to my irritation. As a junior doctor, I witnessed the terrible complications of heroin: hepatitis, septicaemia, amputations, and the rest. And in the 1990s, I saw the recreational drug scene kick off—ecstasy, skunk, and then the increasing use of cocaine.

More recently, we have seen the increase in “legal highs,” “club drugs,” and the abuse of prescription drugs. Every generation seems to have …

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