A growing number of Southwest Floridians are caught up in the opioid epidemic, and their children are finding themselves a part of a new generation of “opioid orphans.” In addicted newborns, the crying and shaking are symptoms of withdrawal from Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome, or NAS. MEDNAX-affiliated neonatologist, Dr. William Liu at Golisano Children’s Hospital in Fort Myers, Fla., says, “We’ve seen about a 1200% increase in our admissions for neonatal abstinence syndrome.” It’s a syndrome forcing doctors to make a difficult choice until babies can be safely weaned.

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