It's known as Krokodil, and how to make the drug has landed on our shores in the U.S.
First reported in Russia, the drug has been in use there for several years now.
The homemade drug that combines codeine with such things as gasoline and lighter fluid, producing a high three times stronger than heroin when injected, is called the flesh-eating drug because it rots the body from the inside out. It has claimed thousands of victims in Russia, but has only been publicly reported in the United States since last week. The genesis of the drug actually goes back to the 1930s, when it was known as a painkiller called "desomorphine," reported the Joliet Patch.
Why the name Krokodil? It is the the Russian word for crocodile, and was named for what the drug does to your body when injected. The drug makes the skin look somewhat like crocodile hide. The skin rots, turns scaly, green, purple, and then progresses to abscesses as well as gangrene.
Arizona has seen 2 cases, Nevada has been involved, and now Joliet, Illinois.
You start shooting this stuff up, and you're gonna have a bad day, week, month, and if really lucky, maybe a year all the while loosing your extremities from amputations if not life itself.
One of the main reasons why this bathtub drug emerged is poppy fields were being destroyed during the war in Afghanistan with Russia. It was discovered that codeine, a drug readily available over the counter there, could be modified, and made into a narcotic several times stronger than heroin. It is also less expensive to manufacture, about 1/10th the cost of heroin. However, the side effects are horrendous.
Hopefully, word of mouth will get around, and stop people from even trying this drug. But that remains to be seen. So far, it has not stopped anything as people in the U.S. are starting to experiment with krokodil, and we are already seeing the consequences of that use in gruesome form.
For the metro Detroit area, and the rest of Michigan, there are no reports of people trying this drug yet. Unfortunately, it may not be much longer before that occurs.
"One person dies every 19 minutes from a drug overdose in the United States and that trend is being driven by prescription (Rx) painkillers." (drugfree.org)
If you or a loved one needs help with any type of drug abuse/addiction problem, contact these sites depending on where you live. SEMCA (Wayne County residents), CARE (Macomb County residents), PACE (Oakland County residents), Drug Free Detroit (City of Detroit residents). For those residing outside the State of Michigan, contact SAMHSA for assistance. For assistance with medical marijuana issues contact The Michigan Medical Marijuana Association, Michigan Medical Marijuana Certification Center, or greentreesdetroit.com, phone number: (313) 967-9999, or (248) 677-2888.
Substance abuse and mental health treatment locator here: SAMSHA