[Substance-abuse related emergencies--illegal drugs, part I].Anasthesiol Intensivmed Notfallmed Schmerzther 2008; 43(11-12):746-53AI
For the first time since the year 2000 the number of death due to substance abuse of illegal drugs has increased in Germany in 2007 (+8 % compared to 2006). Emergency situations due to drug abuse are frequent, particular in big cities. They may be, however, difficult to diagnose and/or treat for an emergency physician on scene because of a lack of diagnostic tools, the local and personal surroundings, and the unknown number and nature of drugs. Many drug intoxications must be considered suicidal. On the other hand, drug intoxications may mask (other) life-threatening conditions. Emergency situations due to withdrawal offer the possibility to motivate patients to take advantage of specialist-guided abstinence programs.