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Opium was prohibited in many countries during the early 20th century, leading to the modern pattern of opium production as a precursor for illegal recreational drugs or tightly regulated legal prescription drugs. Illicit opium production, now dominated by Afghanistan , was decimated in , when production was banned by the Taliban , but has increased steadily since the fall of the Taliban and western occupation in and over the course of the war in Afghanistan. The earliest clear description of the use of opium as a recreational drug in China came from Xu Boling, who wrote in that opium was "mainly used to aid masculinity, strengthen sperm and regain vigor", and that it "enhances the art of alchemists, sex and court ladies".

He also described an expedition sent by the Ming dynasty Chenghua Emperor in to procure opium for a price "equal to that of gold" in Hainan , Fujian, Zhejiang , Sichuan and Shaanxi , where it is close to the western lands of Xiyu. A century later, Li Shizhen listed standard medical uses of opium in his renowned Compendium of Materia Medica , but also wrote that "lay people use it for the art of sex," in particular the ability to "arrest seminal emission". This association of opium with sex continued in China until the end of the 19th century. Opium smoking began as a privilege of the elite and remained a great luxury into the early 19th century.

However, by , Wang Tao wrote that opium was used even by rich peasants, and even a small village without a rice store would have a shop where opium was sold. Smoking of opium came on the heels of tobacco smoking and may have been encouraged by a brief ban on the smoking of tobacco by the Ming emperor. The prohibition ended in with the coming of the Qing dynasty , which encouraged smokers to mix in increasing amounts of opium.

Tobacco mixed with opium was called madak or madat and became popular throughout China and its seafaring trade partners such as Taiwan, Java , and the Philippines in the 17th century.

Fueled in part by the ban on madak , which at first effectively exempted pure opium as a potentially medicinal product, the smoking of pure opium became more popular in the 18th century. In , the smoking of pure opium was described by Huang Shujing , involving a pipe made from bamboo rimmed with silver, stuffed with palm slices and hair, fed by a clay bowl in which a globule of molten opium was held over the flame of an oil lamp.

This elaborate procedure, requiring the maintenance of pots of opium at just the right temperature for a globule to be scooped up with a needle-like skewer for smoking, formed the basis of a craft of "paste-scooping" by which servant girls could become prostitutes as the opportunity arose. The Chinese Diaspora s to first began during the 19th-century due to famine and political upheaval, as well as rumors of wealth to be had outside of Southeast Asia. Chinese emigrants to cities such as San Francisco, London, and New York brought with them the Chinese manner of opium smoking, and the social traditions of the opium den.

French sailors provided another major group of opium smokers, having gotten the habit while in French Indochina , where the drug was promoted and monopolized by the colonial government as a source of revenue. Britain's All-India Opium Act of formalized ethnic restrictions on the use of opium, limiting recreational opium sales to registered Indian opium-eaters and Chinese opium-smokers only and prohibiting its sale to workers from Burma.

Because of the low social status of immigrant workers, contemporary writers and media had little trouble portraying opium dens as seats of vice, white slavery , gambling, knife- and revolver-fights, and a source for drugs causing deadly overdoses, with the potential to addict and corrupt the white population. By , anti-Chinese riots attacked Limehouse , the Chinatown of London. Chinese men were deported for playing keno and sentenced to hard labor for opium possession.

Due to this, both the immigrant population and the social use of opium fell into decline. The total lack of photographic evidence of opium smoking in Britain, as opposed to the relative abundance of historical photos depicting opium smoking in North America and France, indicates the infamous Limehouse opium-smoking scene was little more than fantasy on the part of British writers of the day, who were intent on scandalizing their readers while drumming up the threat of the "yellow peril".

Opium prohibition began in , when the Qing Yongzheng Emperor , disturbed by madak smoking at court and carrying out the government's role of upholding Confucian virtues, officially prohibited the sale of opium, except for a small amount for medicinal purposes. The ban punished sellers and opium den keepers, but not users of the drug. During the Qing dynasty, China opened itself to foreign trade under the Canton System through the port of Guangzhou Canton , with traders from the East India Company visiting the port by the s.

Due to the growing British demand for Chinese tea and the Chinese Emperor's lack of interest in British commodities other than silver, British traders resorted to trade in opium as a high-value commodity for which China was not self-sufficient. The English traders had been purchasing small amounts of opium from India for trade since Ralph Fitch first visited in the midth century. This allowed the company to exercise a monopoly over opium production and export in India, to encourage ryots to cultivate the cash crops of indigo and opium with cash advances, and to prohibit the "hoarding" of rice.

This strategy led to the increase of the land tax to 50 percent of the value of crops and to the doubling of East India Company profits by It is also claimed to have contributed to the starvation of 10 million people in the Bengal famine of Beginning in , the British government began enacting oversight of the company's operations, and in response to the Indian Rebellion of , this policy culminated in the establishment of direct rule over the presidencies and provinces of British India.

Bengal opium was highly prized, commanding twice the price of the domestic Chinese product, which was regarded as inferior in quality. Some competition came from the newly independent United States, which began to compete in Guangzhou, selling Turkish opium in the s. Portuguese traders also brought opium from the independent Malwa states of western India, although by , the British were able to restrict this trade by charging "pass duty" on the opium when it was forced to pass through Bombay to reach an entrepot.

In response to the ever-growing number of Chinese people becoming addicted to opium, the Qing Daoguang Emperor took strong action to halt the import of opium, including the seizure of cargo. The British queen Victoria , not willing to replace the cheap opium with costly silver, began the First Opium War in , the British winning Hong Kong and trade concessions in the first of a series of Unequal Treaties.

Following China's defeat in the Second Opium War in , China was forced to legalize opium and began massive domestic production. Scientific evidence of the pernicious nature of opium use was largely undocumented in the s, when Protestant missionaries in China decided to strengthen their opposition to the trade by compiling data which would demonstrate the harm the drug did. Faced with the problem that many Chinese associated Christianity with opium, partly due to the arrival of early Protestant missionaries on opium clippers, at the Shanghai Missionary Conference, they agreed to establish the Permanent Committee for the Promotion of Anti-Opium Societies in an attempt to overcome this problem and to arouse public opinion against the opium trade.

Accordingly, the missionaries first organized the Anti-Opium League in China among their colleagues in every mission station in China. American missionary Hampden Coit DuBose acted as first president. This organization, which had elected national officers and held an annual national meeting, was instrumental in gathering data from every Western-trained medical doctor in China, which was then published as William Hector Park compiled Opinions of Over Physicians on the Use of Opium in China Shanghai: American Presbyterian Mission Press, The vast majority of these medical doctors were missionaries; the survey also included doctors who were in private practices, particularly in Shanghai and Hong Kong, as well as Chinese who had been trained in medical schools in Western countries.

In England, the home director of the China Inland Mission , Benjamin Broomhall , was an active opponent of the opium trade, writing two books to promote the banning of opium smoking: In , Broomhall formed and became secretary of the Christian Union for the Severance of the British Empire with the Opium Traffic and editor of its periodical, National Righteousness. He lobbied the British Parliament to stop the opium trade. He and James Laidlaw Maxwell appealed to the London Missionary Conference of and the Edinburgh Missionary Conference of to condemn the continuation of the trade.

When Broomhall was dying, his son Marshall read to him from The Times the welcome news that an agreement had been signed ensuring the end of the opium trade within two years. Official Chinese resistance to opium was renewed on September 20, , with an antiopium initiative intended to eliminate the drug problem within 10 years.

The program relied on the turning of public sentiment against opium, with mass meetings at which opium paraphernalia were publicly burned, as well as coercive legal action and the granting of police powers to organizations such as the Fujian Anti-Opium Society. Smokers were required to register for licenses for gradually reducing rations of the drug. The program was counted as a substantial success, with a cessation of direct British opium exports to China but not Hong Kong [79] and most provinces declared free of opium production.

Nonetheless, the success of the program was only temporary, with opium use rapidly increasing during the disorder following the death of Yuan Shikai in Many [81] local powerholders facilitated the trade during this period to finance conflicts over territory and political campaigns. In some areas food crops were eradicated to make way for opium, contributing to famines in Kweichow and Shensi Provinces between and , and food deficits in other provinces.

Beginning in , Chinese nationalist groups came to describe the period of military losses and Unequal Treaties as the "Century of National Humiliation", later defined to end with the conclusion of the Chinese Civil War in It was hoped that Ma Fuxiang would have improved the situation, since Chinese Muslims were well known for opposition to smoking opium.

General Ma had been using the bank, a branch of the Government of China's exchequer, to arrange for silver currency to be transported to Baotou to use it to sponsor the trade. The opium trade under the Chinese Communist Party was important to its finances in the s. The Mao Zedong government is generally credited with eradicating both consumption and production of opium during the s using unrestrained repression and social reform. Remaining opium production shifted south of the Chinese border into the Golden Triangle region.

In , China was estimated to have four million regular drug users and one million registered drug addicts. There were no legal restrictions on the importation or use of opium in the United States until the San Francisco Opium Den Ordinance, which banned dens for public smoking of opium in , a measure fueled by anti-Chinese sentiment and the perception that whites were starting to frequent the dens. This was followed by an California law requiring that narcotics carry warning labels and that their sales be recorded in a registry; amendments to the California Pharmacy and Poison Act in made it a crime to sell opiates without a prescription, and bans on possession of opium or opium pipes in were enacted.

At the US federal level, the legal actions taken reflected constitutional restrictions under the enumerated powers doctrine prior to reinterpretation of the commerce clause , which did not allow the federal government to enact arbitrary prohibitions, but did permit arbitrary taxation. In a similar manner, the Harrison Narcotics Tax Act of , passed in fulfillment of the International Opium Convention of , nominally placed a tax on the distribution of opiates, but served as a de facto prohibition of the drugs. Following passage of a Colonial Australian law in , Queensland's Aboriginals Protection and Restriction of the Sale of Opium Act addressed opium addiction among Aboriginal people , though it soon became a general vehicle for depriving them of basic rights by administrative regulation.

By all Australian states and territories had passed similar laws making prohibitions to Opium sale. Smoking and possession was prohibited in Hardening of Canadian attitudes toward Chinese opium users and fear of a spread of the drug into the white population led to the effective criminalization of opium for nonmedical use in Canada between and the mids.

In , the International Opium Commission was founded, and by , 34 nations had agreed that the production and importation of opium should be diminished. In , 62 nations participated in a meeting of the Commission. Subsequently, this role passed to the League of Nations , and all signatory nations agreed to prohibit the import, sale, distribution, export, and use of all narcotic drugs, except for medical and scientific purposes.

Opium-producing nations are required to designate a government agency to take physical possession of licit opium crops as soon as possible after harvest and conduct all wholesaling and exporting through that agency. Before the s, regulation in Britain was controlled by the pharmacists. Pharmacists that were found to have prescribed opium for illegitimate causes and anyone found to have sold opium without proper qualifications would be prosecuted.

Because addiction was viewed as a medical problem rather than an indulgence, doctors were permitted to allow patients to wean themselves off opiates rather than cutting off any opiate use altogether.

Later in the 20th century, addiction to opiates, especially heroin in young people, continued to rise and so the sale and prescription of opiates was limited to doctors in treatment centers. If these doctors were found to be prescribing opiates without just cause, then they could lose their license to practice or prescribe drugs. During this time the use of opium had little negative connotation and was used freely until when a law was passed to confine opium smoking to specific dens.

Therefore, the ban on said products was more a result of negative connotations towards its use and distribution by Chinese immigrants who were heavily persecuted during this particular period in history. This act put taxes and restrictions on the sale and prescription of opium, as well as trying to stigmatize the opium poppy and its derivatives as "demon drugs", to try and scare people away from them.

It made the use and possession of opium and any of its derivatives illegal. The restrictions were recently redefined by the Federal Controlled Substances Act of During the Communist era in Eastern Europe, poppy stalks sold in bundles by farmers were processed by users with household chemicals to make kompot " Polish heroin " , and poppy seeds were used to produce koknar , an opiate.

Globally, opium has gradually been superseded by a variety of purified, semi-synthetic, and synthetic opioids with progressively stronger effects, and by other general anesthetics. Morphine sales began in , by Heinrich Emanuel Merck of Darmstadt, and helped him expand his family pharmacy into the Merck KGaA pharmaceutical company. Codeine was isolated in by Pierre Jean Robiquet. The use of diethyl ether and chloroform for general anesthesia began in —, and rapidly displaced the use of opiates and tropane alkaloids from Solanaceae due to their relative safety.

Heroin , the first semi-synthetic opioid, was first synthesized in , but was not pursued until its rediscovery in by Felix Hoffmann at the Bayer pharmaceutical company in Elberfeld, Germany. From to heroin was marketed as a non-addictive morphine substitute and cough medicine for children.

Meet the best DJs at Opium Barcelona

Because the lethal dose of heroin was viewed as a hundred times greater than its effective dose, heroin was advertised as a safer alternative to other opioids. Preparations of the drug such as oxycodone with paracetamol and extended release oxycodone remain popular to this day. A range of synthetic opioids such as methadone , pethidine , fentanyl late s , and derivatives thereof have been introduced, and each is preferred for certain specialized applications.

Nonetheless, morphine remains the drug of choice for American combat medics , who carry packs of syrettes containing 16 milligrams each for use on severely wounded soldiers. Opium poppies are popular and attractive garden plants, whose flowers vary greatly in color, size and form. A modest amount of domestic cultivation in private gardens is not usually subject to legal controls. In part, this tolerance reflects variation in addictive potency. A cultivar for opium production, Papaver somniferum L. The remaining alkaloids in the latter cultivar are primarily narcotoline and noscapine.

Seed capsules can be dried and used for decorations, but they also contain morphine, codeine, and other alkaloids. These pods can be boiled in water to produce a bitter tea that induces a long-lasting intoxication See Poppy tea. If allowed to mature, poppy pods poppy straw can be crushed and used to produce lower quantities of morphinans. In poppies subjected to mutagenesis and selection on a mass scale, researchers have been able to use poppy straw to obtain large quantities of oripavine , a precursor to opioids and antagonists such as naltrexone.

Poppy seeds are a common and flavorsome topping for breads and cakes. One gram of poppy seeds contains up to 33 micrograms of morphine and 14 micrograms of codeine, and the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration in the United States formerly mandated that all drug screening laboratories use a standard cutoff of nanograms per milliliter in urine samples. A single poppy seed roll 0. A slice of poppy seed cake containing nearly five grams of seeds per slice produced positive results for 24 hours.

Such results are viewed as false positive indications of drug use and were the basis of a legal defense. When grown for opium production, the skin of the ripening pods of these poppies is scored by a sharp blade at a time carefully chosen so that rain, wind, and dew cannot spoil the exudation of white, milky latex , usually in the afternoon.

Incisions are made while the pods are still raw, with no more than a slight yellow tint, and must be shallow to avoid penetrating hollow inner chambers or loculi while cutting into the lactiferous vessels. In Indian Subcontinent, Afghanistan, Central Asia and Iran, the special tool used to make the incisions is called a nushtar or "nishtar" from Persian , meaning a lancet and carries three or four blades three millimeters apart, which are scored upward along the pod.

Incisions are made three or four times at intervals of two to three days, and each time the "poppy tears", which dry to a sticky brown resin, are collected the following morning. One acre harvested in this way can produce three to five kilograms of raw opium. Oil poppies, an alternative strain of P. Raw opium may be sold to a merchant or broker on the black market, but it usually does not travel far from the field before it is refined into morphine base , because pungent, jelly-like raw opium is bulkier and harder to smuggle.

Crude laboratories in the field are capable of refining opium into morphine base by a simple acid-base extraction. A sticky, brown paste, morphine base is pressed into bricks and sun-dried, and can either be smoked, prepared into other forms or processed into heroin. Other methods of preparation besides smoking , include processing into regular opium tincture tinctura opii , laudanum , paregoric tinctura opii camphorata , herbal wine e. Opium syrup is made by combining Opium extract extractum opii finally can be made by macerating raw opium with water. To make opium extract, 20 parts water are combined with 1 part raw opium which has been boiled for 5 minutes the latter to ease mixing.

Heroin is widely preferred because of increased potency. One study in postaddicts found heroin to be approximately 2. This form predominates in the U.

Relative to other preparations of heroin, it has been associated with a dramatically decreased rate of HIV transmission among intravenous drug users 4 percent in Los Angeles vs. Opium production has fallen since , when 41, tons were produced, but because 39, tons of that year's opium were consumed in China, overall usage in the rest of the world was much lower. Production is expected to increase in as new, improved seeds have been brought into Afghanistan. Afghanistan is currently the primary producer of the drug. After regularly producing 70 percent of the world's opium, Afghanistan decreased production to 74 tons per year under a ban by the Taliban in , a move which cut production by 94 percent.

Opium production in that country has increased rapidly since, reaching an all-time high in According to DEA statistics, Afghanistan's production of oven-dried opium increased to 1, tons in , more than doubled by , and nearly doubled again during In late , the U. For farmers, the crop can be up to ten times more profitable than wheat. Opium production has led to rising tensions in Afghan villages. Though direct conflict has yet to occur, the opinions of the new class of young rich men involved in the opium trade are at odds with those of the traditional village leaders.

An increasingly large fraction of opium is processed into morphine base and heroin in drug labs in Afghanistan. Despite an international set of chemical controls designed to restrict availability of acetic anhydride , it enters the country, perhaps through its Central Asian neighbors which do not participate. A counternarcotics law passed in December requires Afghanistan to develop registries or regulations for tracking, storing, and owning acetic anhydride. Chinese production mainly trades with and profits from North America.

In , they were seeking to expand through eastern United States. Power shifted from remote to high-end smugglers and opium traders. Outsourcing became a huge factor for survival for many smugglers and opium farmers. In South American countries, opium poppies are technically illegal, but nonetheless appear in some nurseries as ornamentals.

What is Heroin?

Legal opium production is allowed under the United Nations Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs and other international drug treaties, subject to strict supervision by the law enforcement agencies of individual countries. The leading legal production method is the Gregory process , whereby the entire poppy, excluding roots and leaves, is mashed and stewed in dilute acid solutions. The alkaloids are then recovered via acid-base extraction and purified. This process was developed in the UK during World War II, when wartime shortages of many essential drugs encouraged innovation in pharmaceutical processing.

Legal opium production in India is much more traditional. As of , opium was collected by farmers who were licensed to grow 0. The price of opium paste is fixed by the government according to the quality and quantity tendered. The opium paste is dried and processed into government opium and alkaloid factories before it is packed into cases of 60 kilograms for export.

Purification of chemical constituents is done in India for domestic production, but typically done abroad by foreign importers. A recent [ when?


Part of the proposal is to overcome the "80—20 rule" that requires the U. Senlis arranged a conference in Kabul that brought drug policy experts from around the world to meet with Afghan government officials to discuss internal security, corruption issues, and legal issues within Afghanistan. In late , the British government permitted the pharmaceutical company MacFarlan Smith a Johnson Matthey company to cultivate opium poppies in England for medicinal reasons, after Macfarlan Smith's primary source, India, decided to increase the price of export opium latex.

This move is well received by British farmers, with a major opium poppy field located in Didcot , England. The British government has contradicted the Home Office's suggestion that opium cultivation can be legalized in Afghanistan for exports to the United Kingdom, helping lower poverty and internal fighting while helping the NHS to meet the high demand for morphine and heroin.

Opium poppy cultivation in the United Kingdom does not need a licence, but a licence is required for those wishing to extract opium for medicinal products. In the industrialized world, the United States is the world's biggest consumer of prescription opioids, with Italy one of the lowest because of tighter regulations on prescribing narcotics for pain relief. Intravenous injection of opiates is most used: The smoking of opium does not involve the burning of the material as might be imagined. Rather, the prepared opium is indirectly heated to temperatures at which the active alkaloids, chiefly morphine, are vaporized.

In the past, smokers would use a specially designed opium pipe which had a removable knob-like pipe-bowl of fired earthenware attached by a metal fitting to a long, cylindrical stem.

Opium (perfume)

The smoker would lie on his or her side in order to guide the pipe-bowl and the tiny pill of opium over the stream of heat rising from the chimney of the oil lamp and inhale the vaporized opium fumes as needed. Several pills of opium were smoked at a single session depending on the smoker's tolerance to the drug.

The effects could last up to twelve hours. In Eastern culture , opium is more commonly used in the form of paregoric to treat diarrhea. This is a weaker solution than laudanum , an alcoholic tincture which was prevalently used as a pain medication and sleeping aid.

Opium: Uses, Addiction Treatment & Side Effects -

Tincture of opium has been prescribed for, among other things, severe diarrhea. Despite the historically negative view of opium as a cause of addiction, the use of morphine and other derivatives isolated from opium in the treatment of chronic pain has been reestablished. If given in controlled doses, modern opiates can be an effective treatment for neuropathic pain and other forms of chronic pain.

Opium contains two main groups of alkaloids. Phenanthrenes such as morphine , codeine , and thebaine are the main psychoactive constituents. Morphine is the most prevalent and important alkaloid in opium, consisting of 10—16 percent of the total, and is responsible for most of its harmful effects such as lung edema , respiratory difficulties, coma, or cardiac or respiratory collapse.

Morphine binds to and activates mu opioid receptor in the brain, spinal cord, stomach and intestine. Regular use can lead to drug tolerance or physical dependence. Chronic opium addicts in China [63] or modern-day Iran [] consume an average of eight grams of opium daily. Both analgesia and drug addiction are functions of the mu opioid receptor, the class of opioid receptor first identified as responsive to morphine.

Tolerance is associated with the superactivation of the receptor, which may be affected by the degree of endocytosis caused by the opioid administered, and leads to a superactivation of cyclic AMP signaling. There are many kinds of rehabilitation treatment , including pharmacologically based treatments with naltrexone , methadone , or ibogaine. Some slang terms for opium include: The traditional opium pipe is known as a "dream stick". From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

For other uses, see Opium disambiguation. The production of opium rose by 65 percent from to to 10, tons, "the highest estimate recorded by UNODC since it started monitoring global opium production at the start of the 21st century," a statement said. Afghanistan accounts for the overwhelming majority with an output of 9, tons, a rise of 87 percent over The resurgence of production in Afghanistan has led to a 37 percent rise in the area under opium poppy cultivation to almost , hectares worldwide, UNODC said, adding that more than three-quarters of this was in Afghanistan itself.

Global manufacture of cocaine in also "reached the highest level ever reported" -- an estimated 1, tons or a 25 percent rise on Colombia accounted for the bulk of production with output increasing by more than a third between and to tons. The area used for growing coca leaf, the raw ingredient for cocaine production, is now some , hectares, with 69 percent of that in Colombia.

The rise in production in Colombia represents a challenge to the implementation of the accord forged between the government and rebels from the now defunct FARC, and "is bound to augment the power and wealth of trafficking groups", the report said. Meanwhile the spread of opioid crisis, which has caused particular alarm in the United States in recent years, "is becoming a major threat to public health", with opioids "accounting for 76 percent of deaths where drug use disorders were implicated".

The increase is "largely due to a rise in deaths associated with pharmaceutical opioids, including fentanyl and fentanyl analogues," the report said. This has been cited as part of the reason why the US has experienced a decline in life expectancy over two consecutive years, a phenomenon not seen for decades. While fentanyl, a synthetic opioid 50 times more powerful than heroin is the main drug of its kind on the American market, the UNODC also expressed "growing concern" over opioid use elsewhere. The report said the most widely consumed drug in was cannabis, with about million people using it at least once during the previous year.