Street drugs made with prescription painkillers result in deaths

Recently, five people died in Sacramento County and another twenty overdosed after taking street-mixed medicines laced with Fentanyl.

Dr. Olivia Kasiyre, Sacramento County Public Health Officer, has declared a health emergency after five people in the county have died recently from overdoses related to the powerful painkiller, Fentanyl. Fentanyl is labeled a Schedule II prescription drug, meaning it is considered less dangerous than cannabis.

What is Fentanyl?

Fentanyl is a powerful synthetic opiate analgesic considered to be similar to but stronger than morphine. It is usually prescribed for patients who suffer from severe and chronic pain, or to manage pain after a surgical procedure. It is typically used to treat patients with severe pain, or to manage pain after surgery. It is also sometimes used to treat pain sufferers who are physically tolerant to opiates.

The recent deaths occurred because street manufacturers dried Fentanyl, powderized it, possibly mixed it with other narcotics and put it in a capsule. The drug is described as “incredibly potent.”

What is more incredible, is that a dangerous chemical drugs such as Fentanyl can easily find its way into the hands of street drug manufacturers. Fentanyl is classified as a schedule II drug which means the drug has a currently accepted medical use in treatment in the United States. Fentanyl’s most common side-effects include diarrhea, nausea, constipation, dry mouth, sleeplessness, confusion, weakness, sweating, abdominal pain, headaches, fatigue, anorexia, dizziness, hallucinations, anxiety, depression, shortness of breath, indigestion and more.

Cannabis, also used for pain relief and also used recreationally, has a fraction of the side-effects of Fentanyl but is classified as a schedule I drug, meaning it is described as being among the most dangerous drugs of all the drug schedules with potentially severe psychological or physical dependence. This is as unreasonable as it is untrue. No one has ever died of a cannabis overdose, in fact, cannabis can be seen as a gateway drug leading away from opioid addiction.

While it is true that Fentanyl was mixed with other substances, resulting in the tragic deaths in Sacramento, it does highlight how easily people can have access to and misuse a very dangerous prescription drug.


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