Radiologic Manifestations of Recreational Drug Abuse

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Recreational drug abuse (RDA) is a commonly encountered clinical problem that, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), has resulted in a continuous steady increase in usage, morbidity, and mortality over the last two decades. The clinical picture of RDA is often opaque due to its extensive range of clinical presentation. As the problem becomes more widespread and many patients withhold a history of RDA, the radiologist frequently is first to note and suggest the possibility of RDA. Familiarity with the radiologic manifestations of RDA is critical to provide accurate diagnosis with a succinct differential diagnosis and to allow for prompt treatment of patients with this potentially fatal condition.

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