A new street drug known as “tranq” or “zombie drug” is causing concern among public health officials due to its alarming effects on users’ bodies. The drug, which is being sold on the streets of Philadelphia, combines fentanyl, a powerful opioid, with xylazine, a sedative used on horses and cows. It is known as a flesh-eating drug.
The combination of these two drugs can cause users to enter a semi-conscious state and may result in their skin deteriorating, causing scaly, crusty wounds that may require amputation if left untreated. Xylazine, in particular, can result in sedative-like symptoms such as excessive tiredness and respiratory depression, as well as the formation of open wounds that can quickly become severe.
What is Xylazine?
Xylazine, also known as Rompun, is a sedative and analgesic drug that is commonly used in veterinary medicine. The drug is often used as an anesthetic agent for large animals, such as horses, cattle, and deer, but is also used as a tranquilizer for smaller animals, such as dogs and cats.
The drug works by blocking the transmission of nerve impulses in the central nervous system, leading to sedation and muscle relaxation. It also has an analgesic effect, providing pain relief to animals undergoing surgery or other medical procedures.
Xylazine is available in various formulations, including injectable solutions, tablets, and gels. The drug is typically administered by a veterinarian, who carefully calculates the appropriate dose based on the animal’s weight, age, and health status.
While xylazine is considered safe when used correctly, it can have side effects, including a decrease in heart rate and blood pressure, respiratory depression, and in rare cases, seizures. The drug can also interact with other medications, such as opioids and benzodiazepines, and should not be used in animals with certain health conditions, such as liver or kidney disease.
In recent years, xylazine has gained attention for its misuse in the illicit drug trade. The drug is sometimes mixed with opioids, such as fentanyl, to increase their potency and can lead to dangerous and deadly outcomes for users. As a result, many states have implemented stricter regulations on the use and distribution of xylazine.
Why is xylazine a matter of concern to Philadelphia Users?
Despite its dangerous effects, “tranq” is not classified as a controlled substance for either people or animals, leaving it in a perplexing and terrifying grey area. Hospitals rarely test for it with normal toxicology testing, making it difficult to detect in users.
The drug is popular among dealers due to its low cost and the fact that adding fentanyl lengthens the “hit”. However, the amplified psychoactive effects of xylazine can also increase the enjoyment of drug use, making it appealing to some users.
The drug has caused severe injuries to users in Philadelphia, prompting public health officials to warn the public about its dangers. Those who use the drug are at a greater risk of injury, such as sexual assault or getting hit by a car, due to the drug’s ability to render users unconscious.
If you or someone you know is struggling with addiction, it is important to seek help from a medical professional.