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Indiana Drug Threat Assessment Update
May 2002

Other Dangerous Drugs

The distribution and abuse of other dangerous drugs such as MDMA, GHB, and LSD pose an increasing threat, particularly to the state's teenagers and young adults. The diversion and abuse of pharmaceuticals also are concerns in the state.

  

MDMA

The availability and abuse of MDMA (3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine) are increasing in Indiana, primarily in areas with colleges and universities. Most of the MDMA currently available in the state is transported from Chicago by local independent dealers. The drug typically is distributed to high school and college students at raves and dance clubs for $15 to $30 per tablet.


MDMA, also known as ecstasy, Adam, XTC, E, and X, is a stimulant and low-level hallucinogen. Sometimes called the hug drug, MDMA purportedly helps abusers to be more "in touch" with others and "opens channels of communication." However, abuse of the drug can cause psychological problems similar to those associated with methamphetamine and cocaine abuse including confusion, depression, sleeplessness, anxiety, and paranoia. The physical effects can include muscle tension, involuntary teeth clenching, blurred vision, and increased heart rate and blood pressure. MDMA abuse also can cause a marked increase in body temperature leading to muscle breakdown, kidney failure, cardiovascular system failure, stroke, or seizure as reported in some fatal cases. Research suggests that MDMA abuse may result in long-term and sometimes permanent damage to parts of the brain that are critical to thought and memory.

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GHB

The availability and abuse of GHB (gamma-hydroxybutyrate) also are increasing in Indiana. GHB generally is produced outside of Indiana and transported into the state by local independent dealers. The Evansville Police Department reports that GHB was produced in its area by a college student using a recipe obtained from the Internet. GHB typically is distributed to high school and college students at raves and dance clubs for $5 to $10 per dose.

  

LSD

The hallucinogen LSD (lysergic acid diethyl-amide) available in some urban areas of Indiana. It is transported from California and distributed at the retail level by local independent dealers for $2 to $4 per dose. LSD often is applied to blotter paper and candy or disguised as breath freshener drops.

  

Diverted Pharmaceuticals

Pharmaceuticals are diverted, distributed, and abused in Indiana; however, the threat posed by diverted pharmaceuticals is less than that of other illicit drugs. Commonly abused diverted pharmaceuticals include OxyContin, Valium, Vicodin, and Xanax. Pharmaceuticals generally are acquired by abusers and distributors through forged or stolen prescriptions, "doctor shopping" (individuals who may or may not have a legitimate ailment visit numerous physicians to obtain drugs in excess of what should be legitimately prescribed), and theft from pharmacies and nursing homes.

 


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