Intended for healthcare professionals


Emergency naloxone for heroin overdose: Over the counter availability needs careful consideration

BMJ 2006; 333 doi: (Published 05 October 2006) Cite this as: BMJ 2006;333:754
  1. Andrew Byrne, dependency physician (
  1. 75 Redfern Street, Redfern, NSW 2016, Australia

    EDITOR—In their support for making naloxone freely available, Strang et al state that naloxone saves lives,1 yet it can also be dangerous, even lethal.2 Many other reports of adverse reactions are from use in health care, so more harm is likely in the hands of untrained people, especially as some may be intoxicated themselves when the drug is used. This needs to be carefully balanced …

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