WASHINGTON, D.C. – (June 16, 2016) – Several new drugs are on the streets of America and one is possibly making its way here soon. Here’s what we know:
The drug is not illegal, but authorities are working to change that after Johnson County, Kansas officials say a second death there has been attributed to the powerful drug. The Kansas Bureau of Investigation is warning the public about the drug as it is believed to have contributed to a number of accidental drug overdose deaths within the past month. “This drug has no accepted medical use and poses a risk to Kansas citizens,” says the KBI. “Across the country, opioids, including prescription pain relievers and heroin, remain the driving factor behind the drug overdose epidemic.” According to KBI, U-47700 is a synthetic opioid analgesic drug that is reportedly nearly 8 times more potent than morphine. It may cause eye, skin or respiratory system irritation and is harmful if inhaled, ingested or absorbed through the skin. U-47700 produces strong effects including sedation and respiratory depression which could be harmful or fatal. Although U-47700 is not currently controlled, contact with or use of this substance is strongly discouraged. U-47700 can be obtained from a variety of sources, including the internet, and is available in various forms. Parents and caregivers are strongly encouraged to be watchful of packages and mailing labels that indicate shipments from overseas, particularly China. “This substance is often sold in containers, vials or plastic zippered baggies that are labeled ‘Not for Human Consumption’ or ‘For Research Purposes Only’,” says KBI. “This is a tactic frequently utilized by manufacturers of illegal drugs. Unknown substances with these markings should be considered suspicious.” If you or someone you know is suspected of ingesting U-47700, seek medical attention immediately. Ohio, Wyoming and Georgia have recently undergone procedures for emergency scheduling of U-47700 in order to make consumption, possession and distribution illegal.
A New Jersey couple was arrested for 20 wax folds of heroin stamped “Rolex” in New Jersey this week. It is unknown at this time whether the heroin was infused with a drug of the same name which posed to be a problem in Scotland last year. The green ecstasy tablet was linked to numerous deaths worldwide, and caused overheating, vomiting, hallucinations and a protracted tingling effect on fingers and toes. The tablets contained little of the active ingredient of ecstasy, but have other elements in it known to raise blood pressure and body temperature.
There is no reason at the time to believe the popular hit song by Desiigner has any connection to the drug at this time – it is believed to reference the new BMW X6, which resembles the type of bear. However, ANOTHER New Jersey man was arrested last week for heroin stamped “Panda”. Because of the recent changes in the accessibility to Oxycontin, many replaced the drug with the popular pain reliever Opana (popular nicknames bear, pandas, panda bears). Opana is an opioid used to treat moderate to severe pain, and in several instances has been mixed in with heroin.
491 people were newly diagnosed with HIV in Ireland last year, a 30% increase from 2014 figures, and officials are contributing a large portion of those cases to Snow Blow, a former head shop drug that leaves users at increased risk. While heroin users may inject 3-4 times a day, a Snow Blow user may inject every couple of hours. Ireland has seen 231 diagnoses since the beginning of this year, but only had 167 this time last year. The country has an average of 10 diagnoses for HIV per week. Officials say the evidence points for an increased need for supervised injection sites, and while many parts of the country are committed, some are pushing to speed up the process.