Methamphetamine - Case-based discussions

Date Published: 
Monday, July 23, 2018

Dr Vicki Macfarlane talks about methamphetamine use in New Zealand. Vicki worked as a GP for over 19 years in a diverse range of practices before starting her work as an addiction specialist at CADS in Auckland. Her current role is as clinical lead of the detoxification service in Auckland.




  • 39 year old Māori male who reports left sided chest pain, present for the last two hours, constant and associated with shortness of breath. Has a history of hypertension and two previous visits to ED with similar chest pain.
  • 25 year old male reports being spied on by gang members, and is having hallucinations and is asking for medication.
  • 24 year old female who is 24 weeks pregnant in her first pregnancy and has been referred by her midwife after disclosing she is taking methamphetamine.
  • 35 year old male, requesting advice on withdrawal from meth. He has been using ½ - 1 gram intravenously 3-4 times a week.
  • Parents of a 28 year old male, requesting advice for compulsory treatment for their son who using methamphetamine and is at significant risk of harm.


Take home messages

  • Methamphetamine is absolutely a problem in New Zealand.
  • Be aware of the harms around cardiovascular risk and mental health problems.
  • How to support people who want help and improve engagement with services.





Vicki Macfarlane
Addiction specialist

To contact Vicki Click here.

Episode supported by:

Recognition of Learning Activities

Complete and submit the learning reflection form for CPD/MOPS points provided by The Royal New Zealand College of General Practitioners below for recognition of learning activities.

Learning Reflection Form