What Is China White Heroin?
China White heroin is the common street name given to a heroin substitute made from the synthetic opioid fentanyl (α-Methylfentanyl), a fast-acting, and incredibly potent pain medication and anesthetic.
Heroin dealers sometimes lace China White into heroin to increase the drug’s strength, though this can result in imminent death for the credulous user. China White powder may be snorted, or diluted with water and injected into a vein.
Why Is Heroin Called “China White”?
Heroin powder is commonly called china white because of its alleged purity. Heroin users assume that the substance they’re buying off the street is straight-up fentanyl powder.
“What gave rise to China White is a mixture of the original fentanyl with perhaps some residues of heroin and maybe some powder cocaine, then they started referring to it as a more pure product,” Lopez-Ojeda says.
So the name “China White” is actually a misnomer, said Dr. Wilfredo Lopez-Ojeda, a biomedical sciences professor at the University of Central Florida who co-authored the Universal Journal of Clinical Medicine editorial with Dr. Carlos Ramos-Matos.
What Is A-Methylfentanyl?
China White heroin is officially known under the brand name α-Methylfentanyl. It was initially discovered by a team at Janssen Pharmaceutica in the 1960s. In 1976, it began to appear mixed with “china white” heroin as an additive. It was first identified in the bodies of two drug overdose victims in Orange County, California, in December 1979, who appeared to have died from an opiate overdose but tested negative for any known drugs of this type.
α-Methylfentanyl was placed on the Schedule I list in September 1981, only two years after its appearance on the street, but already other analogs were being developed.
Following the appearance of α-methylfentanyl on the market, over ten new analogs of fentanyl have been reported, starting with para-fluorofentanyl, followed by α-methylacetyl fentanyl, then by the highly potent 3-methylfentanyl, and subsequently by many others such as β-hydroxyfentanyl, ohmefentanyl, etc.
What Does China White Do To A Person?
China White is a fat-soluble painkiller that’s much stronger and lasts far longer than morphine, pure heroin or fentanyl itself. This designer drug has led to a rash of overdose-related deaths over the last five years; the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention attributed 14 deaths in Rhode Island and 50 deaths in Pennsylvania to acetyl-fentanyl.
China White users suffer mostly from the designer drug’s side effects, Ramos-Matos sys. People high on the drug who enter the emergency room may seem like they’re overdosing on heroin or another opioid, but the symptoms are more complicated because fentanyl derivatives are far more powerful. Lopez-Ojeda says. “If treatment is not followed through accordingly, people can end up dying
China White’s Effect On The Brain
Most psychoactive drugs, such as opioids like white powder heroin, Adderall, OxyContin 40 mg pills, and China White, activate the reward centers of our brains to an unnatural level and affecting the neurotransmitter dopamine, which is responsible for feelings of reward and pleasure. This effect, over time, can make users vulnerable to cravings for the substance, so much so that the person begins to obsess over its acquisition and use leading to serious tolerance and addiction.
Heroin use may lead to addictive behavior and when this addictive behavior occurs, heroin uses may begin to find less pleasure in other activities, including those necessary for life such as eating. The drug essentially hijacks the brain’s reward center so that nothing else will compete with the feelings of euphoria it provides.
Drugs like heroin, crystal meth, and morphine pills act on the reward center of the brain, much like a delicious meal, except the response is far greater than any dopamine response that would otherwise occur naturally.
The neurochemical action of China White is very similar to that of heroin, yet fentanyl is roughly 50 times more potent than heroin itself.
As such, White Heroin ( hell dust) is extraordinarily addictive and produces nearly irresistible cravings and severe withdrawal symptoms, among other significant health problems.
What Are The Side Effects Of China White Heroin?
The impact of China White on the body is almost immediate, and even in small doses, it can cause respiratory depression to potentially lethal levels. As a substance with properties that depress the central nervous system, it can rapidly prove deadly if used in conjunction with any other CNS depressant, such as alcohol, Xanax alprazolam, OxyContin pills, liquid LSD or even Hydrocodone acetaminophen.
In addition to respiratory depression, China White can also cause gastrointestinal problems, changes in heart rate, fainting, and prolonged fatigue or sedation. Heroin increases a person’s risk of experiencing mood disorders such as depression, anxiety disorders, paranoia, confusion, and personality changes. Heroin (hell dust) has also been known to impair the immune system and produce hallucinations.
China White has also been associated with overdoses that are frequently life-threatening, with thousands of deaths having been reported by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in the last few years alone. Some of these fatalities were linked to heroin that had been cut with fentanyl unbeknownst to the user.
A dose of pure China White higher than 2mg can be fatal and combining it with other psychoactive substances, particularly depressants, compounds this danger.