What is fentanyl?

Fentanyl is a powerful synthetic opiate very similar to but more potent than morphine. This is usually prescribed to patients managing pain after a surgery or suffering from chronic and severe pain. It has been categorized as a schedule II prescription.

As a prescription it is also known as the following Actiq, Duragesic, and Sublimaze. Fentanyl has also garnered the street names apache, china white, TNT, murder 8 and tango.

The effects of fentanyl

The effects of this drug are very similar to the street drug heroin or opiate based substances. Just like other opiates fentanyl targets the area of the brain that controls pain and emotions. This drug then binds the receptors in those areas and then floods them with dopamine, the body’s natural pleasure chemical. With an increase in dopamine users feel a rush of euphoria and relaxation.

“Sacramento alone has experienced 36 overdose cases and 9 deaths.”

-According to the DEA

Other effects include:

  • Drowsiness/ respiratory depression and arrest
  • Nausea
  • Confusion
  • Constipation
  • Unconsciousness

How is it administered?

If you are prescribed fentanyl it can be taken via an injection, trans-dermal patch or in a tablet form that quickly dissolves when placed under the tongue. For those abusing this drug through an illegal channel fentanyl is often administered in a powder form and usually combined with other drugs such as heroin. Mixing fentanyl with others drugs may lead to deadly consequences such as over overdose or death.

Fentanyl’s rapid popularity

Within the last year the rise in fentanyl abuse has been rapidly increasing. According to the DEA, Sacramento alone has experienced 36 overdose cases and 9 deaths. This growth has spread to states all over the country like Tennessee, California, New Hampshire and the northern parts of Texas to name a few. The most notable growth comes from Canada where cases of Fentanyl abuse has skyrocketed.

This increase has been on a steady rise because many of the abusers are unaware they are taking fentanyl. This trend has become popular due to the lack of knowledge addicts have in what they are purchasing. Many are under the impression that they have bought heroin, oxycodone or other opiate substances. However, instead they are being sold a combination of these drugs laced with fentanyl.

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