Fentanyl, 50 times more potent than heroin, has become the No. 1 cause of opioid-related overdose deaths in the United States. Over one hundred thousand overdose deaths from Fentanyl have been reported in the past 12 months.
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Fentanyl has taken over America’s drug market. In this article we will answer several questions about fentanyl including:
What is Fentanyl?
The drug is so potent that the equivalent of a few grains of table salt can be fatal. It was developed as a powerful painkiller and surgery anesthetic. The side effect of nausea is minimal. The drug is 100 times more potent than morphine.
Fentanyl is a man-made or synthetic opioid. Originally it was developed for pain management treatment of cancer patients (pharmaceutical skin patch). Especially after surgery, prescription fentanyl is typically used to treat patients with severe pain. It is often used for patients who have chronic pain and physically tolerant to other opioids.
In the past five years, fentanyl has become a drug of harm, overdose and death. It is increasingly being sold illegally and mixed with other drugs such as heroin or cocaine to increase the euphoric effects.
On the streets fentanyl is known with such terms as China White, Dance Fever, Goodfella, Fenty, China Girl and Jackpot. When it is not legally prescribed, the drug is called “street fentanyl.” Fentanyl is taken by injection, snorting or swallowing; often laced in with other drugs.
The effects of fentanyl cause an intense feeling of euphoria plus reduced blood pressure, slowed respiration, nausea, fainting seizures and death. Other effects might include pain relief, confusion, drowsiness and dizziness.
Fentanyl with Methamphetamine & Cocaine
Many methamphetamine or cocaine fatal overdoses are found to be caused by the co-involvement of illicitly manufactured fentanyl. Dealers and/or users are mixing fentanyl with other drugs, and this is causing many deaths in the United States.
Fentanyl & Fake Prescription Pills
The manufacturer of fake prescription pills laced with fentanyl is a new problem on the horizon. The Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) is finding deadly fake pills at record rates. These fake prescription pills are becoming widely available and often sold on e-commerce platforms and social media. Pills are made to look like various opioids including hydrocodone (Vicodin) as well as oxycodone (Oxycontin, Percocet). It is important to be aware that pills purchased outside of a licensed pharmacy are illegal, dangerous, and potentially lethal.
Naloxone to Treat Opioid Overdose
Heroin laced with Fentanyl is widespread. Individuals addicted to heroin are becoming aware of this. Public officials are urging heroin users to not inject alone and carry the medication called naloxone to treat overdoses. Law enforcement, first responders and emergency medical technicians are increasingly carrying naloxone to treat those that have overdosed saving many lives. Approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), naloxone is a medication which can rapidly reverse opioid overdoses. Medical intervention is critical as soon as possible after administering/receiving naloxone.
If you are with someone who has overdosed call 911 immediately, the person needs medical care and specific medicine to reverse the overdose. If you have naloxone administer it after calling 911.
Fentanyl Coming from China & Mexico
Starting in China fentanyl flowed to over 25 countries in the world and to states across the USA. DEA officials have reported that rogue chemical companies in China have operated openly and outside the reach of U.S. authorities. Sales of the deadly fentanyl were actually sold on websites in 35 languages. The aggressive marketing and widespread distribution explains America’s skyrocketing death toll from drug overdoses. Users have purchased direct from China laboratories with delivery through FedEx, UPS and a more attractive option – the US Mail.
With easy excess to fentanyl from China and now recently with open boarders, Mexico and Mexican Cartels are now flooding the Unites States with this dangerous drug. Mexico has a high production of increased quantities of fentanyl and illicit fentanyl-containing tablets. The federal Commission on Combating Synthetic Opioid Trafficking finds that Mexico is now a “dominant source” of the U.S.’s fentanyl supply and synthetic opioids rapidly saturating drug markets.
Bulk pure fentanyl from China is often obtained by the Mexican cartels and it is often cut with heroin, cocaine or methamphetamine. This makes these drugs extremely dangerous. Users of heroin, cocaine or methamphetamine are often unaware they are purchasing and using fentanyl. The cheap fentanyl from Chinese laboratories goes a long way and becomes very profitable.
Fentanyl flows through Mexican cartels heading north on well-established drug trafficking routes. Much of the dangerous drugs moves through the San Diego border into suburban America and big cities like New York, Chicago and Orlando.