A new synthetic drug called “N-Bomb” is gaining popularity, with fatal results. The synthetic drug is a variation on the NBOMe class of drugs, which were originally designed to map serotonin receptors in the brain for medical research (United National Office on Drugs and Crime). This new strain, however, has been developed and marketed as a “legal” version of LSD.
Unfortunately, the drug is extremely dangerous and has already caused at least 17 deaths since it hit the streets in 2010 (Medical Daily, “New Designer Drug ‘N-Bomb’ Has Already Killed 17 People; Poison Centers Fear Trend Will Worsen”). Before people are swayed to try this new drug, they should be aware of its potentially lethal hazards.
N-Bomb is a hallucinogen with effects similar to LSD, but much more dangerous. Side effects of taking the drug include extreme elevations in body temperature, increased blood pressure and heart rate, agitation, violent behavior, delirium, hallucinations, seizures, kidney failure, coma and death. Patients admitted into hospitals for toxic levels of the drug often have to be restrained due to psychotic and irrational behavior. Emergency cooling procedures are also often necessary to prevent permanent organ damage due to hyperthermia.
The drug is sold on blotter paper, as a powder or as a liquid that can be ingested, snorted or inserted rectally. Snorting or injecting the drug causes it to hit the system more quickly and strongly, which can intensify the effects and make overdosing more likely. As with many street drugs, there is no way to know the potency of the drug prior to taking, so abusers can never be sure how strong of a dose they’re going to get. This is another contributing factor for the number of overdoses that medical professionals are seeing from the drug.
Law enforcement officers have grown increasingly concerned over synthetic drugs in the recent years. Synthetic drugs can be made with a wide range of ingredients, making it difficult to identify, track and enforce drug restrictions. Last November, the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) classified the drug as a Schedule I substance, but this move may not be effective. History has shown that when the government attempts to outlaw a synthetic drug, the drug’s makers simply change the ingredients slightly to slip through loopholes of the law. The drugs are big business for overseas dealers, including terrorist organizations in the Middle East. Recent DEA busts have seized almost $20 million in drug cash bound for overseas syndicates.
In spite of their hazy legality, N-Bomb and other synthetic drugs are extremely addictive and dangerous. Users can quickly develop a tolerance and chemical dependence on synthetic drugs, causing painful and traumatic withdrawal symptoms when the abuser neglects to take more. Prolonged abuse can result in a powerful psychological addiction to the drug, causing overwhelming cravings and making it seem impossible to quit.
If you or someone you know has become addicted to N-Bomb or any other drug, you are not alone. The Texas Substance Abuse Helpline can help you find an effective treatment option that fits your needs. Call to speak with an addiction specialist 24/7.