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Tag Archive | "Opioids"

Overdoses continue to rise


 

From Michigan State Police Lakeview

Those calls handled by troopers which are identified as overdoses, are again up significantly from the previous year. “Although the raw numbers might not seem extraordinary, the increase is almost exponential; we went from 7 in 2015 to 15 in 2016 and now 25 in 2017,” said F/Lt. Kevin Sweeney, Lakeview Post Commander. Sweeney also stressed that the numbers are only MSP calls and don’t include calls handled by other law enforcement or EMS agencies. 

According to Sweeney, the majority of these overdoses are related to opioid use including heroin. “The use of these drugs and the overdoses associated with it, continue to be a law enforcement and public health concern in our post area.”  

Opioids including heroin are obviously dangerous, but now we know they’re being mixed with other drugs and compounds, increasing their toxicity. “Cheese” as it’s sometimes referred, is heroin mixed with over the counter cold remedies like Tylenol PM. This is a very addictive and dangerous combination, often leading to both overdose and death. “Liquid O” is black tar heroin mixed with water, making it easy to conceal but difficult to identify, “Often our youths have no idea what they’re using until it’s too late,” stressed F/Lt. Sweeney. 

The newest trend is the mixing of heroin with fentanyl or carfentanil. Fentanyl is nearly 100 times more powerful then morphine and carfentanil is a shocking 10,000 times more potent.  “Plain and simple, these drugs can and will end your life”, commented F/Lt. Sweeney.

Besides the immediate risk to your life, heroin has long-term health effects as well, including heart, liver and kidney disease. It also increases your chances of contracting chronic diseases like HIV. 

Today, heroin comes in many forms and tell-tale signs like track marks may no longer clue you into someone’s use. The signs of heroin use vary among users but common signs include constricted pupils, acting drowsy, nausea and frequent respiratory infections. 

Please, if you or someone you know uses heroin, call 1-800-662-HELP for assistance.

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