This essay Ghb and what it has a total of 2369 words and 12 pages.
ghb and what it
GHB, or gamma-hydroxybutyrate, is a nutrient that is part of the metabolism
process in mammalians. It can be found in every cell of the human body. The
greatest quantities can be found in the kidney, heart, skeletal muscles, and
brown fat tissues (Chin and Kreutzer, 1992). Chin and Kruetzer also believe it
to be a neurotransmitter, however that has not yet been proven. GHB is known to
be a metabolite and also a precursor of the inhibitory neurotransmitter GABA
(gamma-aminobutyric acid). GHB and GABA have a close structural relationship,
but GHB does not act on GABA receptor sites.
GHB was first synthesized about thirty years ago. A french researcher, Dr. H.
Laborit, was exploring the effects of GABA in the brain. Laborit had to
synthesize GHB because very little or no GABA crosses the blood-brain barrier.
The difference in the two allowed GHB to cross this barrier where some of it is
metabolized into GABA (Vickers, 1969).
What happened was GHB exhibited a range of effects beyond what was expected
from GABA. In the years to follow, the effects of GHB have been extensively
researched. It has come to be used in Europe as a general anesthetic, a
treatment for narcolepsy, an aid in child birth, and also as a treatment for
alcoholism and withdrawal syndrome. Then in the 80\'s, it was available over the
counter in health food stores. It was used by body builders for its ability to
stimulate growth hormone release which aided in fat reduction and muscle
building. However, in the last few years it has become a popular recreational
drug. It gives a pleasant, alcohol like, hangover free "high" with
For the thirty years prior to 1990, all research papers on GHB were unanimous
in reporting numerous beneficial physiological effects and the absence of long
term negative effects. Vickers called it "a truly nontoxic hypnotic"
and emphasized its "lack of toxicity." Vickers also showed evidence
that GHB demonstrates "no toxic effects on the liver and kidney." As
recent as 1989, the consensus was unchanged. Gallimberti\'s study from that year
on its uses in treating alcohol withdrawal in humans notes that "GHB\'s
action...seems to be without serious side effects." Gallimberti\'s reference
to the "safety of GHB" shows how well-established this property of the
nutrient had become.
Then, on November 8, 1990, the FDA banned the over the counter sale of GHB in
the United States. In 1991, two scientists from the California Department of
Health Services wrote a report on ten "poisonings" associated with GHB.
Chin and Kreutzer had warned of GHB\'s potential for abuse. They observed that
"all interviewed patients reported a pleasurable sensation or a ‘high\'.
Several of them..continued taking [GHB] because it made them ‘feel
If the ten "poisonings" are looked at more closely, four involved
"unknown doses," four featured the "coingestion" of other
drugs, (usually alcohol), one involved unmedicated epilepsy, and another a
history of grand mal seizures. Since alcohol and other central nervous system
depressants are not recommended with GHB, and because it is contraindicated for
epileptics, such cases are not unexpected.
One point of the of the poisonings needs to be addressed--the use of the
terms "coma" and "seizures" are used in the description of
these ten cases. If a high dose of GHB is consumed it can cause clonus, a rapid,
rhythmic contraction and relaxation of muscles which would be better described
as muscle spasm or uncontrollable twitching than a seizure. GHB has also been
known to cause intense drowsiness, abrupt sedation, and deep sleep which is
probably better described as unarrousability or deep sedation rather than coma.
The authors of these ten reports confirmed that "there have not been any
reported deaths" and that "if product use is discontinued, full
recovery with no long term side effects is universal."
Some of the concerns that are related with GHB are some of the side effects
that are present when large doses are consumed. A dose twice the recommended for
relaxation can put you to sleep in a very short amount of time after
consumption. In this respect it is similar to alcohol: if you drink twice as
much as you normally would, you probably wouldn\'t function very well.
Most of the people that take it find that it gives a pleasant state of
relaxation and tranquility. There can also be feelings of placidity, sensuality,
mild euphoria, and can also give a tendency to talk. Worries tend to fade into
feelings of emotional warmth, well being, and pleasant drowsiness. The morning
after is unlike that of alcohol or other drugs that induce similar feelings.
Most people claim to feel refreshed and even energized
Topics Related to Ghb and what it
Neurotransmitters, GHB, Drug culture, Hydroxy acids, Sedatives, Gamma-Hydroxybutyric acid, Gamma-Aminobutyric acid, Henri Laborit, Recreational drug use, GABA receptor, GHB receptor, Succinic semialdehyde dehydrogenase deficiency
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