Cocaine Cutting AgentsAlyssa
Cocaine and crack cocaine are highly addictive stimulants and street drugs. Despite its dangerous side effects and the legal restrictions regarding cocaine use, manufacturing, and distribution, illegal labs and drug dealers still find a way to sell it. Because it’s almost always used recreationally and is widely popular in the illicit drug market, the majority of it that’s sold on the streets is cut with other substances. While cocaine itself is a powerful drug, it’s rarely ever sold or used in its purest form. Our drug and alcohol treatment center in Palm Beach knows that half of the danger of cocaine abuse is linked to cocaine cutting agents.
How Pure Is Cocaine?
Most cocaine comes from Columbia and Peru. The Cocaine Signature Program (CSP) in 2018 found that 90 percent of cocaine samples were from Columbia, six percent were from Peru, and the other four percent were of an unknown origin. Based on these findings, the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) found that the average purity of cocaine bricks analyzed was 85.4 percent. 80 percent of all cocaine bricks were uncut.1 Because cocaine is often sold illegally on the streets, buyers rarely know how pure these drugs are. The purity of cocaine may vary depending on the source and the area.
Cocaine is a highly addictive and harmful substance that can destroy a person’s life. For those who are battling a cocaine addiction, Behavioral Health of the Palm Beaches offers a medically monitored detox that helps patients wean off of cocaine, mitigates withdrawal symptoms, and reduces addiction cravings.
What Is Cocaine Cut With?
Cutting cocaine refers to adding other substances to intensify the effects of a drug or allow dealers to sell less of the actual product for more money. Cocaine cutting agents can change its texture, form, and color, and also make it easier for it to be injected, smoked, or snorted. Cut cocaine may appear light pink or off-white, very different from its usual stark white color. It’s one of the most frequently cut drugs on the market and the additives used for cutting crack cocaine can not only intensify its side effects, but they can also increase the person’s risk of overdose and death.
The most common cocaine cutting agents include:
- Laundry detergent
- Local anesthetics (procaine)
- Boric acid
- Heroin, referred to as speedballing when the two are combined
- Meat tenderizer
- Ascorbic acid
- Baking soda
The main concern regarding cocaine cutting agents is the potential for adverse physical and psychological reactions or side effects. Most cocaine users who purchase it on the streets are unaware of the cutting agents it contains, which can result in serious injury.
Cocaine Cutting Agent Effects
Because cocaine cutting agents involve different substances, the side effects can vary greatly. Some possible side effects of cocaine cutting agents and cocaine abuse in general include:
- Cardiovascular disease
- Heart attack
- Heart failure
- Blockages in the heart, liver, and brain
- Burns in the throat and nasal passages
- Decreased white blood cell count and increased risk of infection
- Increased risk of contracting viruses like HIV, hepatitis, and AIDS
The individual side effects of each additive can also intensify the usual effects of cocaine, like increased heart rate, blood pressure, body temperature, and alertness. Cocaine and cardiovascular disease are also strongly linked due to cocaine’s high effects on the central nervous system. At our center for addiction treatment in Lake Worth, we offer cocaine addiction treatment that is specifically designed to treat the physical and psychological effects of cocaine.