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Fentanyl: Injecting a Loaded Gun

 “You’re injecting yourself with a loaded gun.”

In an interview with STAT, Tim Pifer, the director of the New Hampshire State Police Forensic Laboratory described the role that fenanayl currently plays in drug usage.

What makes fentanyl so deadly?  A picture tells it all:

New Hampshire State Police Forensic Lab    

In identical bottles pictured to the left, you see a lethal dose of heroin, as compared to a lethal dose of fentanyl. 
Notice how similar the two substances look. Notice what a tiny amount of fentanyl it takes to cause a death.
 According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, Fentanyl can be as much as 100 times more potent than other pain killers.  Even  worse... Street drugs are generally made in home labs, so precise accurate measurements of fentanyl added to other drugs is questionable.  In fact, unlikely.
Consequently, a person taking a dose of heroin, for example, has no idea how much, if any, fentanyl has been added to the mix to increase potency.  What may seem to be a routine dose of heroin may, in fact, contain a lethal dose of fentanyl. 
Remember the movie The Deer Hunter?  A group of soldiers sit in a tent in Vietnam passing around a gun with a single bullet. A terrifying scene.  It seems as if buying street drugs is similar, a macabre dance with death.


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