Fentanyl facts. Are you or someone you know at risk for opioid overdose? Learn More.
What is Fentanyl?
Fentanyl is an opioid that is much more toxic than other opiods, such as heroin, morphine, methadone, or codeine. This makes the risk of accidental overdose with fentanyl much higher.
Illicit or "bootleg" fentanyl is being made illegally and sold on the street. It is being cut into other drugs like heroin, coccaine, exstasy, and also in counterfeit pills that are made to look like other prescription pills (like 'oxycontin' or 'Percocet')
There is no easy way to know if fentanyl is in your drugs. You can't see it, smell it or taste it.
When you are getting drugs from anywhere other than from a pharmacy or medical professional (like from a friend, ordering online, or a dealer) there is no way to be sure exactly what is in them or how toxic they may be.
Any drug can be cut (mixed) with fentanyl. Even a very small amount can cause an overdose.
If you are going to use, here are some ways to use more safely:
- Avoid using alone
- Avoid using more than one drug at a time or using drugs with alcohol
- Start with smaller amounts or "testers"
- Carry Naloxone
Signs of overdose
- Slow or no breathing
- Lips or fingers turn blue
- Person will not wake up/is not responding
- Gurgling/choking sounds
- Pinpoint (tiny) pupils
What to do in case of overdose?
- Call 9-1-1
- Give a dose of Naloxone
- No change? Start chest compresssions or CPR
- In 3-5 mins, give next dose of Naloxone
- No change? Contnue chest compressions or CPR until help arrives
Naloxone is a medication that temporarily reverses an opiod overdose. Naloxone only lasts for about 30-60 minutes but a lot of drugs last longer - this means the overdose symptoms can come back!
Naloxone can save a life while you are waiting for the ambulance to arrive.
Take-home naloxone kits are available for free
For more information and tips: