Prescription Drug Abuse
by Robert L. Bryant and Howard L. Forman
October 2019, 157pp, 6 1/8x9 1/4
1 volume, Greenwood

Hardcover: 978-1-4408-5919-9
$41, 35€, A59
eBook Available: 978-1-4408-5920-5
Please contact your preferred eBook vendor for pricing.

According to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, every day more than 1,600 teens begin abusing prescription drugs.

The misuse and abuse of prescription drugs has reached epidemic proportions in recent years, yet many individuals still believe, incorrectly, that their use is without risk. This book explores those risks as well as controversies surrounding this public health issue.

Prescription drugs are powerful tools that can be used to treat a variety of ailments, from pain to anxiety to insomnia. Their potency and perceived safety also make them targets for abuse. The misuse of prescription drugs can have dire health consequences for individuals and high economic costs for society, among other dangers.

A part of Greenwood’s Health and Medical Issues Today series, this book identifies prescription drugs that are abused and the consequences such abuse can have for both individuals and society, and discusses the many questions relating to how to address this public health issue. Part I explores the current magnitude of the prescription drug abuse epidemic in the United States, which drugs are most frequently abused, how individuals obtain these medications, and the consequences of abuse. Part II delves into the controversies surrounding the topic, including the roles that doctors and “Big Pharma” play and legal issues regarding prosecution of prescription drug abusers. Part III provides a variety of useful materials, including case studies, a timeline of critical events, and a directory of resources.


  • Profiles the most commonly abused prescription drugs, explaining how each one can affect the mind and body and lead to physical and/or psychological addiction
  • Examines key issues related to prescription drug abuse, such as prescriber responsibility and societal attitudes toward this form of drug abuse
  • Offers illuminating case studies that highlight key ideas and debates discussed in the book through engaging real-world scenarios
  • Provides readers with a helpful Directory of Resources to guide their search for additional information
Robert L. Bryant is a resident physician in psychiatry at Montefiore Medical Center in Brooklyn, New York. He received his doctorate in medicine from the Tulane University School of Medicine in 2016. Before attending medical school, Bryant served in the Peace Corps for two years, teaching English in Mauritania.

Howard L. Forman, MD, is assistant professor in psychiatry and behavioral sciences at Albert Einstein College of Medicine, as well as medical director of the Addiction Psychiatry Consultation Service at Montefiore Medical Center in Brooklyn, New York. He received his doctorate in medicine from Albert Einstein College of Medicine in 2008 and is licensed to practice in both Florida and New York. In addition to contributing to a number of professional peer-reviewed publications, he has written many articles for U.S. News and World Report.

Health and Medical Issues Today

From the latest developments in treatment to updates on public health threats, information about health and medicine impacts lives more directly than almost any other subject. Despite a wealth of coverage online and in print media, there is still an overwhelming need for a single source to which a reader can turn for accurate, current information on an issue of concern.

The series Health and Medical Issues Today provides just such one-stop resources for those seeking solid overviews of the most controversial and persisting issues in health and psychology. Each volume offers a balanced, in-depth introduction to the medical, scientific, legal, and cultural aspects of subjects ranging from obesity to sports medicine, mental illness, HIV/AIDS, and tobacco use.
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