Physiology of Substance Abuse

Course Description

A survey of drug classifications and medical complications of their use, and the basic mechanisms of drug absorption, metabolism, distribution, and elimination. Mechanisms of tolerance, dependence, and withdrawal are emphasized. Also covered is an overview of brain systems involved in drug use, abuse, and dependence.

Learning Outcomes

  • Identify the classes of psychoactive drugs
  • Describe the mechanisms of drug absorption, metabolism, distribution, and elimination.
  • Describe the medical complications of, and withdrawal symptoms associated with, each class of psychoactive drug.
  • Describe the brain systems involved in drug use, abuse, and dependence.


Writing Assignment: Instructors must assign a significant paper of a minimum of 7 pages in length as either a research or essay on a topic related to the course content.andlt;br /andgt;Threaded Discussions: weekly. ClassLivePro lectures: weekly. Exams: weekly or midterm & final. Power-point lectures: per unit.


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