Meth: Agitated Delirium

The opioid epidemic gets a lot of attention, but methamphetamine use may actually affect more of our patients in the emergency department. Those of us who work in the ED are all too familiar with the agitated delirium that meth can cause, as well as the long term effects, like heart failure. In this episode, we hear one woman’s story of her experience with methamphetamines and how substance use nearly destroyed her life. Then our Toxicology colleagues, Dr. Kelly Owen and Dr. Dan Colby, walk us through how meth works, how to manage acute intoxication and other dangerous consequences, and how we can better care for our patients who use methamphetamines.

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Dr. Julia Magaña, Associate Professor of Pediatric Emergency Medicine at UC Davis

Dr. Sarah Medeiros, Associate Professor of Emergency Medicine at UC Davis


Dr. Dan Colby, Assistant Professor of Emergency Medicine, Medical Toxicologist and Addiction Medicine Specialist at UC Davis

Dr. Kelly Owen, Associate Professor of Emergency Medicine and Medical Toxicologist at UC Davis


DAWN and Methamphetamine

Richards JR, Hamidi S, Grant CD, Wang CG, Tabish N, Turnipseed SD, Derlet RW. Methamphetamine Use and Emergency Department Utilization: 20 Years Later. J Addict. 2017;2017:4050932. doi: 10.1155/2017/4050932. Epub 2017 Aug 17. 

The care of patients using methamphetamine in the emergency department: Perception of nurses, residents, and faculty 


Thank you to the UC Davis Department of Emergency Medicine for supporting this podcast and to Orlando Magaña at OM Audio Productions for audio production services.

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