We knew it was just a matter of time before the shifty black market practices that have now made the consumption of opioids even more dangerous than kissing venomous snakes would infiltrate the cocaine trade and ruin what was once a good time for those of us with a need for speed.
There are now reports hitting the mainstream suggesting that ruthless drug dealers are now using the dangerous synthetic opiate fentanyl to cut this go-go powder before distributing it to the street—an underhanded deal that is making cocaine overdoses more fatal than ever before.
According to a recent news segment from WKSU-FM, Ohio has become a breeding ground of death when it comes to drug overdoses. Last year alone, the state ran more than 4,000 people through local morgues due to overdoses involving deadly drug mixtures, most of which had one thing in common—they were all cut with fentanyl.
State officials like Andrea Boxill, deputy director of the Governor’s Cabinet Opiate Action Team, say this trend has now made cocaine more dangerous, as it is being cut with the deadly drug at a much higher rate.
In fact, nearly 1,000 of the 4,000 overdose deaths in 2016 were attributed to fentanyl-laced cocaine. That’s right, one-in-four drug overdose fatalities stemmed from the user unknowingly snorting this powerful opioid.
Does this sound familiar? It should.
Remember that scene in the movie Pulp Fiction where Marsellus Wallace’s wife (played by the lovely Uma Thurman) suffered a savage heroin overdose after snorting what she believed to be cocaine?
That’s exactly what’s happening in Ohio.
When it comes to fentanyl, this is not a drug that should be handled by the amateur street pharmacist. For starters, it can be up to 100 times more potent than morphine. Even touching a small amount of this stuff can bring on the reaper. What’s more is the way the drug works on the human body. Just like other opioids, it attaches itself to the same receptors in the brain that control breathing, making it so easy to snuff out the unsuspecting user.
Long gone are the good old days when drug dealers used relatively safe cutting agents, like laundry detergent and laxatives, to make coke supplies more profitable. Now, the repercussions of using this drug have graduated to something far more sinister.
Sadly, this potentially devastating movement is destined to make its way to other parts of the nation.
It was bad enough when fentanyl was only being used to stretch heroin, but now that it is being found in cocaine, death rates from drug overdoses are expected to enter the realm of the obscene.
Sure, there were always risks associated with the consumption of these types of recreational drugs, but officials say the impending doom stemming America’s lust for the dust has never been as severe as it is right now.
“Anytime you use an illicit drug, there’s really no safety valve,” Boxill said. “It’s not as if you have the FDA monitoring and regulating cocaine and its potency. So, using substances illegally, you’re always taking a chance.”
Although it has never been our nature to engage in fear-mongering, the thought of being eliminated from the face of the Earth by a line of cocaine doesn’t set too well. Fortunately, the opioid-reversal drug Narcan is now being sold at Walgreens without a prescription in around 8,000 stores all across the nation. Considering the state of affairs out there in the street right now, it would not be paranoid to keep this life-saving treatment on hand in the event of an accidental overdose. It will cost around $125 for a box containing two doses, but it’s a bargain if it saves the life of you or someone you care about from fentanyl-laced cocaine.