analgesic: pain relief property of certain medications (aspirin, acetaminophen, ibuprofen, morphine, oxycodone, fentanyl, tramadol, and others).
carfentanil: a derivative of fentanyl, synthesized from morphine; many times more potent by mass than fentanyl; high addictive potential.
epidemic: a widespread disease, disorder, or problem affecting a disproportionately large number of individuals within a population or community at the same time.
fentanyl: synthetic opioid, intended for pain relief; misuse occurs as it is combined with other substances, markedly increasing risk of overdose; high addictive potential.
heroin: opioid drug derived from morphine, illegal in the United States; high addictive potential.
hyperalgesia: abnormally enhanced pain sensitivity.
Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome (NAS): a cluster of problems present in newborn infants who have a history of being exposed to opiate/opioid drugs while in utero; acute withdrawal from the addictive drugs as the placental connection to mother’s system is broken at birth.
opiate: substances derived from opium (opium poppy).
opioid: substances synthetically constructed to interact with opioid receptors in the human body; term currently may also apply to substances derived from opium (opiates).
tolerance: when a person’s body adapts to use of a specific substance to the point where increased doses are necessary to provoke the same level of response or the response is lessened when the dose remains constant; one criteria used to diagnose substance use disorders (addiction).