Overdose deaths involving fentanyl have quadrupled in recent years. Because of the War on Drugs and criminalization of people who use drugs, people often are unaware of the exact composition of the substances they’re using. This makes evidence-based harm reduction strategies such as fentanyl test strips, safety planning, and access to safe supply more vital than ever.
What is Fentanyl?
Pharmaceutical fentanyl is a synthetic opioid, approved for treating severe pain, typically advanced cancer pain.1 It is 50 to 100 times more potent than morphine. It is prescribed in the form of transdermal patches or lozenges and can be diverted for misuse and abuse in the United States.
However, most recent cases of fentanyl-related harm, overdose, and death in the U.S. are linked to illegally made fentanyl.2 It is sold through illegal drug markets for its heroin-like effect. It is often mixed with heroin and/or cocaine as a combination product—with or without the user’s knowledge—to increase its euphoric effects.
NARCAN® Nasal Spray, the first nasal formulation of naloxone, is FDA approved for the treatment of known or suspected opioid overdose. Designed for use in the community, NARCAN Nasal Spray is needle-free and ready to use.
What is NARCAN®?
NARCAN® Nasal Spray, the first nasal formulation of naloxone, is FDA approved for the treatment of known or suspected opioid overdose. Designed for use in the community, NARCAN Nasal Spray is needle-free and ready to use. Please see Important Safety Information below.
NARCAN® Nasal Spray may counteract the life-threatening effects of an opioid overdose. Since most accidental overdoses occur in a home setting, it was developed for first responders, as well as family, friends, and caregivers—with no medical training required.
- Designed for ease-of-use in the community setting
- Inhalation not required
- Requires no specialized training*
*Administer in accordance with the Instructions for Use.
Get NARCAN® Nasal Spray so you can help reverse an opioid overdose.
NARCAN® Nasal Spray is not a substitute for emergency medical care. Always get help immediately, even if the person wakes up, because he/she may relapse into respiratory depression. The use of NARCAN® may result in symptoms of acute opioid withdrawal. Results may vary.
Watch this brief video to learn more about the dangers posed by opioids and how NARCAN® Nasal Spray can help reverse their effects in the event of an overdose.
FENTANYL USE & OVERDOSE PREVENTION TIPS
Fast Facts About Fentanyl
- Fentanyl is a strong synthetic opioid that has been used in clinical settings for decades and is often described as 80-100 times stronger than morphine, or about 50 times stronger than heroin.
- Fentanyl is partly responsible for the current overdose crisis in the U.S., combined with a lack of resources and the criminalization of people who use drugs.
- Fentanyl moving through the street market comes in the form of a white, gray or tan powder and can be injected, smoked, or snorted. It has also been found in other drugs, like heroin, meth, cocaine, and pressed pills.
- Fentanyl and fentanyl analogues (some stronger, some weaker) are not “naloxone resistant.” They are opioids and will respond to naloxone in the event of an overdose.
- You cannot overdose simply by touching powdered fentanyl. This is a common myth, but fentanyl must be introduced into the bloodstream or a mucus membrane in order for someone to feel the effects. Transdermal fentanyl patches exist and are used primarily in medical settings, but are uniquely formulated to be absorbed by the skin.
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