Saturday, December 31, 2011


Happy New Year!! Lets make sure we do our very best for ourselves and the ones we love . New Year means, I made it through the last by GODS grace!Learn from it and don't relive it, a life full of regret is no life at all.


Struggling with addiction!Maple manor can help,call 814-642-9522 and speak to one of our caring staff who will assist you in getting the treatment you need.They are located at 118 Chestnut St.

$21 Million Awarded to Fla. Smoker with COPD

July 13, 2010 | Leave a comment | Filed in Addiction, Drugs, Government,Legal, Legislation, Marketing And Media, Other & Treatment

Philip Morris USA was ordered by a Florida jury to pay $28 million in damages to a smoker with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease,Law360 reported July 9.
The cigarette company was deemed to be 64-percent responsible for plaintiff Ellen Tate’s illness; Tate herself was held 36-percent responsible by the jury, which awarded the women $8 million in compensatory damages and $16 million in punitive damages.
Tate began smoking at age 12 or 13.
Plaintiffs have won 18 of the 21 cases filed against tobacco companies in Florida since February 2009. Thousands of other such cases are pending

New York Mayor Launches Prescription Drug Abuse Task Force.

By Join Together Staff | December 13, 2011 | Leave a comment | Filed inCommunity Related, Drugs, Government, Prescription Drugs & Prevention

New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg is launching a task force to fight the growing prescription drug abuse epidemic in the city, after officials identified 21 pharmacies that account for about one-fourth of the city’s oxycodone Medicaid reimbursements.
During the past 20 years, New York City has experienced a 10-fold jump in the use of prescription opioids, The Wall Street Journalreports. The number of opioid-related emergency rooms visitsjumped 40 percent between 2004 and 2009. “These drugs are being used to do more than just kill pain,” Bloomberg said in a statement to the newspaper. “They are being misprescribed and misused, resulting in addiction and overdoses.”
The task force will include health and law-enforcement officials. The group’s first round of recommendations is expected in January.
The city’s Department of Health and Mental Hygiene will release guidelines for physicians on how to prescribe opioids safely, according to the article. The guidelines recommend that for most patients with acute pain, a three-day supply of opioids is enough, even though doctors regularly prescribe much more.

Drug Companies Working to Reduce Misuse of Painkiller

By Join Together Staff | June 14, 2004 | Leave a comment | Filed in Drugs &Other

Tamper-proof pills and revised drug formulas are being used by pharmaceutical companies to reduce the likelihood that painkillers are misused, the Washington Post reported June 14.
At Purdue Pharma, the makers of OxyContin, about 19 researchers are exploring ways to make non-addictive or less addictive pain relievers.
“There's a whole biology we're starting to pull apart,” said Charles Grudzinskas, who will chair a session this week on the “Quest for Non-Abusable Opioid Analgesics” at the annual meeting in Puerto Rico of the College on Problems of Drug Dependence, a group that has focused on addiction and pain relief since the 1930s. “We're making progress, but this is very hard — like trying to thread a needle without any glasses on.”
Researchers have found that morphine-based painkillers are the most effective relief for severe post-operative and chronic pain. The challenge for researchers is to make the painkillers less prone to misuse without reducing their effectiveness for patients.
At Endo Pharmaceuticals in Chadds Ford, Pa., another major producer of painkillers, research is focusing on chemically encapsulating the opioids in painkillers to make it more difficult to extract the narcotic.
“We call it the Fort Knox approach,” said senior medical officer Bradley Galer. “We want to tweak the formulation, so if the abuser crushes a pill and takes some of the powder, the opioid would still be in extended-release form and there would be no sudden burst of drug.”
However, experts aren't expecting a breakthrough any time soon. “To have a medication that's devoid of abuse potential and has good analgesic effect is highly desirable, but I know nothing at this point that would do it,” said Frank Vocci of the National Institute on Drug Abuse. “We hope compounds will become available with reduced abuse liability, and that they will push the more abusable compounds out of the market. But this is such a complicated field that I see no single, absolute solution or silver bullet.”

Thursday, December 29, 2011


Today we need to watch our words and how we speak about ourselves and others.  Did you ever notice that you say something negative about your day or a certain situation and it happens.  The Bible teaches us that what we speak can set the course for our day.  We must be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to get angry.  Instead of thinking about yesterday and letting that decide how your day is going to be, start with 5 minutes in quiet and tell yourself today is a new day,  I can and will have a great day and overcome all of life's challenges!  REMEMBER JESUS LOVES YOU!

Drugs Rank as Western Pennsylvania's Top Killer

James "Tinny" Trasp was motionless and blue in a chair at his wife's makeup stand in their Jefferson Hills bedroom. His wife, Toni, frantically pumped his chest in a futile attempt to restart his heart. 

A syringe lay nearby."Somewhere along the way he started using intravenous drugs," said Toni Trasp, recalling that afternoon of July 25, 2008. "I didn't know about it. I had no clue."

To outsiders, Trasp, 49, a father of two, seemed unlikely to die of a drug overdose. He was white, middle-aged, an iron worker who lived in Jefferson Hills, a middle-class South Hills suburb.

Yet a computer-assisted examination by the Tribune-Review of Allegheny County Medical Examiner records from 2006 through 2008 reveals the circumstances of Trasp's death are not unusual.

Drug overdoses killed about 650 people in that period -- more than murders and car crashes combined, records show. That does not include 70 drug-related suicides during that time.

The drugs most often involved came from the medicine cabinet, not street corners.

"If it's not blunt-force trauma, not homicide and not an obvious suicide, I almost just assume it's going to be a drug overdose," said Dr. Karl Williams, the county medical examiner. "That's how frequent of an experience it is here."

The perception that drug addiction and deaths largely affect inner-city black men couldn't be further from the truth, Williams said.

The Tribune-Review analysis shows:

• 2 of 3 deaths involved at least one prescription drug.

• 4 of 5 victims were white.

• 7 of 10 were men.

• 2 of 3 victims lived in the suburbs.

Between 1990 and 2006, prescriptions for painkillers nationwide increased tenfold, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Overdose deaths increased about fivefold during that same span, the CDC reported.

"There is no real mystery here of where (the overdose deaths are) coming from," Williams said. "It's in exact correlation with the prescribing of these drugs."

Fatal overdoses here have quadrupled since the 1980s, when the county averaged 58 a year. Drug deaths topped 100 for the first time in 1998; four years later, the figure doubled to more than 200 annually. It has not dropped below since.

Drugs and suburbs

Twenty-five years ago, it was rare for a National Honor Society student from an upper-middle-class family or a 45-year-old accountant with an MBA to fatally overdose, said Dr. Neil Capretto, medical director of Gateway Rehabilitation Center, which has 20 locations in Western Pennsylvania and Ohio.

"Now, it is commonplace," he said.

Nearly 7 million Americans abuse prescription drugs -- "more than the number who are abusing cocaine, heroin, hallucinogens, ecstasy and inhalants combined," according to the federal Drug Enforcement Administration.

Between 1992 and 2008, the percentage of people 50 and older seeking drug-abuse treatment nearly doubled, according to a recent study from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. Alcohol still leads admissions, but sharp increases were seen in the number of people seeking treatment for heroin, cocaine and marijuana, the study noted.

Hydrocodone, which includes the name-brand drug Vicodin, is the most-commonly abused pharmaceutical in the United States, according to the DEA.

It ranked fourth locally on the list of most-common painkillers discovered by toxicologists in medical examiner's cases, trailing methadone, oxycodone and fentanyl.

Those narcotics are manufactured to mimic pain-numbing properties found in opium, the source of heroin. Once metabolized by the body, heroin turns into morphine. Such was the case for Trasp.

A combination of hydrocodone and morphine was found in Trasp's body, a toxicology report showed.

"We now have a record number of people addicted to heroin in Western Pennsylvania, and the majority started on prescription drugs," said Capretto, who estimates he has treated more than 1,000 people who became heroin addicts after starting with narcotic painkillers. "A lot of people are getting prescription drugs, and not from going to the North Side at 3 in the morning."

After prescriptions expire, addicts often turn to family members' prescriptions, the Internet or drug dealers to get more, experts said. When that becomes too expensive -- the street value of an 80 mg OxyContin pill is about $60 -- users increasingly turn to heroin, which costs about $10 a dose, said Holly Martin, chief operating officer of Greenbriar Treatment Center, which operates 10 facilities in Western Pennsylvania.

"The physical dependence to those painkillers and the physical dependence to heroin is the same," Martin said. "And there's more heroin than ever because they need it."

Anyone, anywhere

The Tribune-Review analysis found that fatal overdoses occurred in 96 of the county's 130 municipalities and in most of the city's 90 neighborhoods.

"It used to be ... it was an overdose on cocaine, or it was a bad thing of heroin or crack," said James Jobe, owner of Jobe Funeral Home and Cremation Services in Monroeville and Turtle Creek. "Now it seems like they've OD'd on prescription drugs."

Dan D'Alessandro, owner of Thomas Smith Funeral & Crematory in Blawnox and D'Alessandro Funeral Home & Crematory in Lawrenceville, handles dozens of overdose deaths each year from places such as Fox Chapel, Lawrenceville and Stanton Heights.

"There's an awful lot of it, and it crosses all socioeconomic neighborhoods," D'Alessandro said. "It's an epidemic."

In Bethel Park, for example, heroin was officially listed as a cause of death in about half of the South Hills municipality's 11 fatal overdoses from 2006 through 2008.

"I grew up thinking heroin was hippies and back alleys in the city," said Bethel Park police Chief John Mackey. "But that's not what it is. It's middle-class, mainstream America."

In nearby Mt. Lebanon, records show five fatal drug overdoses from 2006 through 2008. The victims ranged in age from 21 to 56.

"We are a suburban community, but there aren't any gates to keep the drugs out," said Mt. Lebanon police Lt. Aaron Lauth.

A Duquesne University freshman overdosed in his dorm room in February 2007. That summer, a 42-year-old Crescent man was found dead in the Omni William Penn, Downtown. Both had used heroin, toxicology results showed.

"This can happen in any family," Capretto said. "It does not discriminate."


Gossip about her husband's death hit Toni Trasp hard.

"Times like that, people forget what a good person you were," she said. "They just want to know the bad stuff."

Jim Trasp disliked crowds and photographs but loved riding his Honda Gold Wing motorcycle, especially with his dog Cody, a Bichon Frise, his wife said.

He was no stranger to addiction, battling alcoholism for years before he quit drinking in 2006.

He continued working in a boiler room at U.S. Steel's Clairton Plant, even after developing rheumatoid arthritis in 2003.

"He often described it as walking on glass all the time," Toni Trasp said.

To ease the pain, a doctor prescribed Vicodin. Toni Trasp said her husband soon became addicted.

At times he took too many pills and ran out of medicine before he could refill the prescription. Those days were filled with pain and symptoms of withdrawal.

"At his request, I then kept it under lock and key in the safe," Toni Trasp said of the Vicodin.

In the months before his death, Jim Trasp began weaning himself off the painkillers.

"It's ironic. He finally sobered up and ..." Toni Trasp said, her voice trailing off.

That is why she and the couple's children -- son Sean, 23, and daughter Sara, 20 -- were blindsided by his death.

Trasp has no idea how long her husband had been using heroin. A friend who went to the same pain clinic as her husband told her that he had used for about a year.

She kept a journal the first year after her husband's death. Initial entries were laced with anger and blame. Eventually, they evolved into understanding and compassion.

"You never think it's going to be you," she said. "You always think it's going to be someone else."

Instead of celebrating her 25th wedding anniversary last month, Toni Trasp now works four jobs and is selling the family's dream home -- a two-story on Collins Avenue, across the street from St. Isaac Jogues, a Roman Catholic parish near the Washington County line.

"I know it's not something he did intentionally," she said. "I think it's something he did out of necessity. He chose to do it, but I feel in my heart it was to get out of pain."

Wednesday, December 28, 2011


We must never forget the ones we have lost in the battle of addiction.  Our hope and prayer at Recovery Connections is to reach the living through the lost.  Send us your photos of loved ones lost via e-mail.Lets give them a voice,  they will ever remain in our hearts,  let not there pain and sorrow be in vain.  Though they have moved on they will speak from this page louder than they did in life.  Just give them the chance!!


Things in life that our difficult are worth doing.  Have you ever noticed that the challenges we face that come easy are not as appreciated as much as those things we have to work really hard for.  I have been slow going at adding to this blog because it takes hard work and I have been feeling discouraged.  I know that this blog will reach people even if its only just one and it helps them find their way to freedom from addiction then all the hard work will be worth it.  So no matter what challenge you face in life,  do it with all your heart and make it worth doing!  REMEMBER JESUS LOVES YOU!

Rare Prison Methadone Program Established in Pa.

Prisons in three Pennsylvania counties are setting up methadone programs for inmates who had been on methadone maintenance before being incarcerated, the Allentown Morning Call reported Jan. 23.

Nationally, few inmates receive methadone because of concerns about prescribing an addictive drug behind bars. But Lehigh, Northampton and Berks county prison officials say methadone can help heroin addicts and prevent recidivism.

New York's Rikers Island was, for years, the only prison in the U.S. where inmates could take part in a methadone-maintenance program. But that's changing, experts say, as studies have shown the effectiveness of methadone and good results have been reported from prisons in Connecticut, Chicago, California, and New York that have established methadone programs.

''Methadone maintenance isn't a right of a prisoner unless he or she is in withdrawal and a life is at risk. It was not something prisons had to provide, but we certainly believe more jails and prisons should provide it,'' said Jody Kent, public policy coordinator for the national Prison Project of the American Civil Liberties Union.

“People don't understand that heroin is a lasting addiction, a chronic condition like diabetes,'' said R. Scott Chavez, administrative vice president for the National Commission on Correctional Health Care. “You wouldn't think of not giving diabetics insulin. Studies have pretty much shown that the heroin addict must consider some replacement therapy or he will go back into heroin-seeking behavior.”

Berks County prisons launched their methadone program 1-1/2 years ago, and Norrthampton started methadone maintenance for prisoners six months ago. Lehigh is the latest to establish an in-prison methadone program.

The Partnership at Highlights of 2011

2011 marked the 25th anniversary of The Partnership at, and fittingly, it was a truly defining year.  
From the launch of new services and campaigns to meet the ever-changing needs of families who face substance abuse and addiction to the addition of powerful voices like actor Melissa Gilbert and country music artist Hannah Michelle Weeks who are amplifying our message, we have made measurable strides in helping families solve the problem of teen substance abuse.
We are proud to share some of our Highlights. We express our gratitude and humble thanks to all of our supporters, partners and contributors who helped make them possible. 
Click the image below to view our 2011 Highlights slideshow.

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Thought for the day

Merry christmas!! For everone,today is a day we share with the ones we love, so live laugh and love like theres no tommorw.Remember Jesus loves you,and today is his bithday,We celebrate because he gave us a reason too.

Saturday, December 24, 2011


Todays thought is a thought we must put into action.When considering others our first action shoulb be is to encourage , especially with the ones that are close to us. This blog is work and it would be nice to be encouraged with a comment from someone who reads these thoughts. to be honest am I really reaching anyone .So please encourage me and let me know if I am helping anyone out there.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011


What rules the heart will shape and direct your behavior. 

Rise in Popularity of Synthetic Drugs in PA Leads to Jump in Drugged Driving Arrests

The growing popularity of synthetic drugs known as “bath salts” has contributed to the rise in the number of arrests related to drugged driving in Pennsylvania, according to a state DUI (driving under the influence) expert.
George Geisler, Drug Recognition Expert at the PA DUI Association, told the Harrisburg Patriot-News that because bath salts are currently legal in Pennsylvania, people think it’s fine to take them and drive. In the past three years, the number of drug-DUI arrests in Pennsylvania jumped from 15 percent of all DUI arrests in 2008 to 23 percent in 2010. Geisler says much of that rise is due to the boom in the popularity of synthetic drugs such as bath salts.
The Pennsylvania House and Senate last week passed a ban on synthetic drugs; the bill is awaiting the governor’s signature. The law would make synthetic pot—known as K2 or Spice—along with bath salts and the herb salvia, Schedule I narcotics. The article notes that New Jersey, Louisiana and Florida have already banned bath salts. According to the article, more than a dozen states have banned synthetic marijuana.