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  #1  
Old 14-12-2012, 03:38
Drfeelgood2012 Drfeelgood2012 is offline
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Question about the heroin overdose scene in pulp fiction..

If you have seen the movie Pulp Fiction then I sm sure you remember the scene where mia mistakenly snorts cocaine thinking it was cocaine. Once vince finds her on the floor in a panic frenzy, he rushes her over to his heroin dealer's house and they give her a shot of "adrenaline" to reverse the effects. Is there any reality to this or was it just part of the movie? Classic scene anyway, I love all the chaos in the background?
  #2  
Old 14-12-2012, 03:53
Kid Cudi Kid Cudi is offline
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Re: Question about the heroin overdose scene in pulp fiction..

In most cases, opiate/opioid overdoses cause respiratory arrest, not cardiac arrest. So, epinephrine would not be very effective in treating a heroin overdose. Only naloxone would be able to actually reverse the effects of the drug, returning respiratory function.
  #3  
Old 14-12-2012, 04:42
Frmrjunkie Frmrjunkie is offline
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Re: Question about the heroin overdose scene in pulp fiction..

movie "magic" the gauge of a needle needed to pierce the breast plate would likely resemble a tent stake...nalaxone needed for opiate od, not epinephrine. although that epinephrine has saved my life when i got stung by a bee (you inject in IM into your thigh)

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good comparison with the epi pen. helps the OP understand real uses of epinephrine.
  #4  
Old 14-12-2012, 04:52
AlteredEnthusiasm AlteredEnthusiasm is offline
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Re: Question about the heroin overdose scene in pulp fiction..

like the two responses above me pointed out, pulp fiction was a movie and so most things "medical" are usually pretty off.

An opioid overdose usually presents as EXTREME respiratory depression. They will probably pass out, have very shallow or hardly noticeable breathing, and sometimes blue finger tips or other extremities due to a lack of oxygen in the blood. This will slow the heart somewhat as the body reacts to the lack of oxygen but a shot of epinephrine to the heart alone would not "revive" someone, although if accompanied by rescue breathing (or CPR although the chest compressions would not be necessary) it could tide someone over until they could be given proper medical attention which would comprise of naloxone which is an opioid receptor antagonist and blocks the effects of the opioids in the body thus preventing continuation or an increase in the overdose symptoms but other medical treatment would be required to bring the person back to some semblance of health.
  #5  
Old 14-12-2012, 05:08
Potter Potter is nu online
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Re: Question about the heroin overdose scene in pulp fiction..

Total fiction and pretty irresponsible fiction at that. If anyone were to attempt to actually piece the heart with a needle, (which is not under the sternum and actually reachable with a large needle) they would more likely kill the person.

Please don't ever do this.
  #6  
Old 14-12-2012, 15:19
kumar420 kumar420 is offline
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Re: Question about the heroin overdose scene in pulp fiction..

Ah, movie bullshit. You'd think tarantino of all people would know how to treat an opiate OD
Naloxone and medical attention are the only things that will help somebody survive a serious opiate overdose. NOTHING ELSE (unconsciousness and shallow breathing wont be fixed by bullshit junkie remedies 9.5 times out of ten-useless stuff like slapping them across the face/splashing with cold water)
If they do work the person was either asleep, or it was a partiularly minor overdose- in other words, sheer luck

Last edited by kumar420; 14-12-2012 at 15:20. Reason: Parentheses overload
  #7  
Old 18-12-2012, 09:29
Nosferatus Nosferatus is offline
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Re: Question about the heroin overdose scene in pulp fiction..

I actually asked a qualified paramedic teaching a course I took about this, he said that it is functionally impossible to put any kind of needle through the gaps in the bones over the heart, that injections directly into the heart are never medically indicated, and that an opioid overdose would typically be fatal well before one could drive the sufferer to another residence to be "treated". In short, call 911.

Nosferatus added 2 Minutes and 29 Seconds later...

That being said, it's a movie and most things in it are done more for comic/dramatic effect, rather than to create a frank portrayal of reality, only disaster lies in wait for those who attempt to learn practical skills from movies and TV.

Last edited by Nosferatus; 18-12-2012 at 09:29. Reason: Automerged Doublepost
  #8  
Old 18-12-2012, 19:11
kailey_elise Gold member kailey_elise is offline
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Re: Question about the heroin overdose scene in pulp fiction..

Quote:
Originally Posted by AlteredEnthusiasm View Post
An opioid overdose usually presents as EXTREME respiratory depression. They will probably pass out, have very shallow or hardly noticeable breathing, and sometimes blue finger tips or other extremities due to a lack of oxygen in the blood.

This will slow the heart somewhat as the body reacts to the lack of oxygen but a shot of epinephrine to the heart alone would not "revive" someone, although if accompanied by rescue breathing (or CPR although the chest compressions would not be necessary) it could tide someone over until they could be given proper medical attention...
Actually, the epi would NOT be needed at all.

You can keep someone OD'd alive until help arrives with Rescue Breathing ALONE. Don't need anything else. No adrenaline, no chest compressions - and definitely no "old junkies tales" bullshit like cold showers, ice in the groin/up the ass/in the armpits, shot of milk or salt or cocaine or anything else. None of those work, btw - and could in fact KILL THEM - the cold/ice via shock to the system & we never want to inject more things into an OD'd person.

Rescue Breathing *WORKS*. Narcan works even better, but this isn't available everywhere yet.

If someone goes out, just call 911 & start Rescue Breathing. Tell them you found someone who's lips are blue & they don't appear to be breathing. Usually this will just send an ambulance - once the EMTs get there, tell them what drug(s) the person took (if known), but don't mention it over the phone to the operator/911 dispatcher.

Hopefully soon we'll have Good Samaritan laws in place nationwide, and not have to worry about getting in trouble because someone OD'd!

Again: NEVER INJECT AN OVERDOSED PERSON WITH ANYTHING ELSE! You will likely make the situation worse! Perform Rescue Breathing while you wait for the EMTs to arrive after calling 911!

~Kailey

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Solid post with good information
  #9  
Old 18-12-2012, 19:35
westie420uk westie420uk is offline
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Re: Question about the heroin overdose scene in pulp fiction..

Wow, i've known a few people to OD & they always assumed that they were given adrenaline at the hospital.
I even believed that it was adrenaline that brought a friend back around when he OD'd in front of me (i performed CPR & got him up & about on his feet) He got his chain snatched off his neck when we was walking past to local bad boys & he instantly woke fully back up as a result.
  #10  
Old 19-12-2012, 20:20
kailey_elise Gold member kailey_elise is offline
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Re: Question about the heroin overdose scene in pulp fiction..

westie, nah, they give opioid ODs naloxone (trade name: Narcan) as an antidote. Injected, it will take you out of an OD *RIGHT* quick (well, depending upon dosage). I can see thinking it's a shot of adrenaline, though! If you're given too much (or have a caregiver with a vendetta), it will put you immediately into withdrawal!

They give out Narcan at needle exchanges in Massachusetts, USA. It's the same stuff that's in the injectable given by EMTs, but they give it to us with a nasal atomiser. You shove half the vial up one nostril & half up the other. It's a FAR more gentle wake up, and usually doesn't put you into withdrawal.

In fact, it's so gentle, that many people (myself included) come around & ask why everyone's so excited and why the fuck are you shouting at them.

I don't know if I would've believed that I OD'd if I didn't see the 3 empty vials on the floor when I came back around! Heh.

EMTs/ERs/A&Es don't HAVE to inject so much into you that you go into withdrawal, but sometimes they do it on purpose to 'punish' you. Which is REALLY stupid, because if you feel like you're in withdrawal...you're gonna wanna go do more heroin! And you'll just go out AGAIN if you do manage to score more before your Narcan fully wears off!

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