Background Substance abuse is a serious health concern. This report presents the case of a 22-year-old Brazilian man with a history of mephentermine use who fulfils all the criteria for chemical dependence listed by ICD-10. Mephentermine is a sympathomimetic agent derived from methamphetamine which, in Brazil, is restricted to veterinary use.
Case description The subject used the substance at a high dose (120 mg) to improve his physical performance while working out at a gym. His symptoms included anorexia and insomnia. After days of intense activity, he felt fatigue and soreness. A physical examination revealed scars on both forearms from the injections and a psychological examination revealed moderate speech and motor agitation.
Conclusions Cases such as this may be common among the general public. They should have some bearing upon medical practice and public health policies involving drugs.