HealthWhat is "tranq", this drug designated as a "deadly threat" by the...

    What is “tranq”, this drug designated as a “deadly threat” by the United States?

    Xylazine was originally an animal sedative that was diverted for use with opioids, and is wreaking havoc in the United States.

    The United States announced Wednesday to designate as an “emerging threat” xylazine, nicknamed “tranq”. “This is the first time in our nation’s history that a substance has been designated as an emerging threat,” Dr. Rahul Gupta, director of the drug enforcement bureau at the White House.

    “Xylazine poses the deadliest drug threat our country has ever faced,” the US Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) previously said.

    · What is xylazine, or “tranq?

    Xylazine “is a non-opioid agent” originally approved “in 1972 as a sedative and analgesic for use in veterinary medicine”, or for animals, explains the FDA (US Drug Administration). And there are no “approved uses of xylazine for humans”.

    Its dangerousness comes from the diversion of its use as a drug, known under the name of “tranq” or “tranq dope”, or shortcuts of the term “tranquilizer”, explains the New York Times. The term “zombie drug” is also used because xylazine puts users in a lethargic state.

    When this painkiller became a drug is unclear. It seems that its diversion began in the early 2000s in Puerto Rico, where it is known as “anastesia de caballo”, or “horse anesthetic”, reports Substance Use Philly, a drug prevention association from Philadelphia (Pennsylvania).

    Read Also:   Covid-19 vaccines may cause menstrual disorders, drug agency says

    · Why did it become a drug?

    The use of xylazine is not done alone, it is mixed with opioids.

    “Studies show that people exposed to xylazine often used it knowingly or unknowingly in combination with other drugs, especially fentanyl,” a drug that has been wreaking havoc in the United States for several years, writes the institute. national drug addiction.

    Substance Use Philly explains that the effect of fentanyl lasts a very short time compared to other opioids, “xylazine can be added, at least in part, to prolong the effects”.

    But it is however specified by several organizations that people who consume xylazine are not necessarily aware that this product is part of the drug they buy, that fentanyl is cut with this drug without this being specified to consumers. .

    · What are its dangers?

    The list of effects of xylazine on humans is long: depression of the central nervous system, hypotension (sharp drop in blood pressure), hypothermia, creation of dependency with periods of withdrawal… It can slow breathing and rhythm. heart to dangerous levels.

    But the most visible effects of the consumption of this substance can be read on the skin: repeated exposure can lead to “severe skin necrosis” and ulcerations on several parts of the body which can cause the amputation of limbs. Thus it is black spots on the skin of consumers who most often signal that they have ingested xylazine.

    Read Also:   Covid-19: the DGS requests the sequencing of the positive tests of travelers returning from China

    On the other hand, the narcotic effect of tranq can lead to a level of lethargy which can lead to dangers for the person taking the drug: they can be robbed or assaulted in this period of time during which they are barely conscious.

    Finally, the authorities warn of the lesser effectiveness of naloxone in the face of people who overdose. This product is an opioid antagonist and “may restore normal breathing in a person whose breathing has slowed or stopped as a result of an overdose,” says the Canadian Center for Addiction and Mental Health.

    But its effectiveness against a mixture composed of xylazine is uncertain, because it “is not known to be effective in reversing overdoses involving xylazine, xylazine not being an opioid”, underlines the FDA.

    · What impact in the United States?

    The concern about the use of xylazine as a drug exists mostly in the United States, although other countries have observed the use of this product, such as Canada.

    The DEA writes that it has already “seized mixtures of xylazine and fentanyl in 48 of the 50 states” of the United States, showing its spread throughout the country. “In 2022, approximately 23% of fentanyl powder and 7% of fentanyl pills seized by the DEA contained xylazine.”

    Read Also:   Albert Einstein, Kennedy and Sissi: a journey through the most famous operations to explain the history of surgery | Health & Wellness

    Between 2020 and 2021, the detection of xylazine by the American anti-drug agency (DEA) increased by almost 200% in the south of the country, and more than 100% in the West.

    · How to handle the situation?

    The recent designation of this substance as an “emerging threat” should make it possible to use funds requested by President Joe Biden from the United States Congress in his 2024 budget.

    They will be used to carry out more tests for the drug and analyzes to better understand where it comes from – in particular if it is diverted in the United States or from China – in order to better combat its growing presence on the illegal market.

    “We will bring together national experts in the field to guide practices, and identify the most promising approaches for clinical stabilization, withdrawal management, and treatment protocols”, also detailed Rahul Gupta on Wednesday. Moreover, “we need an antidote”, which does not exist to date, he added.

    In February, the American health authorities had launched an “import alert” in order to better control the deliveries of xylazine, to ensure that they are indeed intended for veterinary use.

    Salome Vincendon

    Salome Vincendon BFMTV journalist

    Source: BFM TV

    This post is posted by Awutar staff members. Awutar is a global multimedia website. Our Email: [email protected]


    Please enter your comment!
    Please enter your name here

    four + six =

    Subscribe & Get Latest News