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Skin that turns to look like that of a crocodile. This is the effect of Krokodil or Desomorphine a opiate derivative , the use of which has been sweeping Russia and now even United States.

Heroin use and addiction is predominant in Russia amongst addicts,   primarily fixers( those who inject the drug) Heroin is however extremely expensive especially after the legal crackdown on the supply into the country. Non availability however does not mean that the addiction to the substance stops. The Russians soon found an alternative… Desomorphine which was initially discovered in the 1930’s as a very strong pain killer which was soon discontinued due to its fatal properties of causing respiratory failures.

Manufacture of Krokodil

In its illegal form desomorphine is extremely cheaply manufactured . It is cooked at home with ingredients that are illegally sold over the counter by pharmacists and in small shops. Codeine cough syrups or pills  , lighter fluid, gasoline, hydrochloric acid , cooking oil, paint thinner, red phosphorus from matchboxes, iodine are all cooked together, distilled and reduced to form a fluid that is then injected into the vein on some part of the body. This is pure poison that is injected into the body.

Immediate effects

 there is an immediate high that is similar to and more potent than heroin. The duration of that high is less than 90 minutes or unto two hours. It takes about half an hour to make the drug. So this is what the krokodil addict does pretty much the whole day.

Why the nomer?

The skin of those who inject desomorphine becomes green, scaly and bobbly like the skin of a crocdille, hence it is called Krokodil .  If the drug misses the vein and enters the flesh then it is sure to form an abscess. Gangrene develops too and amputations are requited many a time. The flesh also rots away where it comes in contact with this drug and the bare bones are left exposed. Teeth decay and

fall off  . Rotting flesh ulcers are found on the body . Vision is lost because of the rotting flesh around the eye.

Long term effects

It is not the desomorphine itself but the other toxins used to manufacture it that is the culprit in the gangrenes and rotting flesh. Long term effects include liver and kidney affections , brajn damage , thrombosis, phlebitis, septicemia etc.


Treatment first involves detox wherein the substance of choice is stopped.  The withdrawals that set after stopping the substance is manifold compared to heroin. The withdrawals last for more than a month compared to 10-12days of heroin. The pain experienced is seemingly unbearable which daunts the users from stopping. The suffering individual has to be given the highest doses of the strongest pain killers for the withdrawal pain along with the strongest tranquilsers. . This drives many back to the substance .

The detox merely is not the treatment. It is only the beginning. Rehabilitation , in house , in an exclusive rehab, in a quiet, luxurious, accepting environment  incorporating counseling mediation and introspective writing and sharing as part of the treatment program aid and facilitate the person suffering to come into recovery.and not find the need to use. This is provided by us at AH


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