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You may be hearing a lot in the news lately about a drug called fentanyl. It is being talked about because it is a big part of the growing opioid epidemic, and it is the deadliest drug threat facing this country, according to the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration. An alarming new finding is that drug poisonings have become the leading killer of Americans between the ages of 18 and 45.

Keep reading because it’s important to be educated about fentanyl. This information may be lifesaving for you or a loved one.

Prescription Fentanyl

First, a little background. Pharmaceutical fentanyl was created in the 1950s as a synthetic opioid for pain management for patients experiencing extreme pain like cancer or post-surgery. It is effective because it is 50 to 100 times more potent than morphine. It is typically prescribed in the form of skin patches or lozenges, but fentanyl comes in many forms, including a powder or liquid like nasal sprays. With appropriate use as prescribed by a provider, fentanyl is safe and effective for pain relief.

Illegal Fentanyl

The problem is the illicit use of fentanyl. The CDC says the most recent cases of fentanyl-related harm, overdose, and death in the United States are linked to illegally made fentanyl.

Because of its pain-relieving properties, it creates a relaxation sensation, making it highly addictive and a good candidate for illicit drug use. That’s the concern. According to the CDC, powdered fentanyl looks just like many other drugs. It is commonly mixed with drugs like heroin, cocaine, and methamphetamine and made into pills resembling other prescription opioids. Fentanyl-laced drugs are extremely dangerous, and many people may be unaware that their drugs are infused with fentanyl. When it’s cut into other drugs, there’s no telling how much fentanyl is in the mix.

The problem is the potency. When fentanyl is mixed with illicit drugs on the street, the immeasurable amounts of fentanyl can be deadly. Reports indicate that just two milligrams of fentanyl, which is equal to 10 to 15 grains of table salt, is considered a lethal dose. The relaxation properties of fentanyl slow the heart rate until it stops beating. That’s why officials say If you encounter fentanyl in any form, do not handle it and call 911 immediately. It’s just that dangerous.

Drug Overdoses with Fentanyl

According to the latest provisional data supplied by the CDC, annual drug overdose deaths have jumped 44% from before the COVID-19 pandemic, and fentanyl takes a big part of the blame.

  • In 2020 there were 76,000 deaths reported in a 12-month period here in the U.S.
  • In 2022 there are now 109,000 people that died of a drug overdose in that same 12-month period.

Synthetic opioids, including fentanyl, were involved in more than two-thirds of overdose deaths in the year ending March 2022. Deaths involving synthetic opioids increased by a staggering 80% over the past two years.

Concerns about Rainbow Fentanyl

There is a new product of concern called rainbow fentanyl, which is manufactured illegally. It features bright colors and gives the appearance of candy. The purpose is to target young people and get them addicted to this powerful and deadly opioid. The concern is so great, in fact, that the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration released a warning about the growing and alarming trend building throughout the country. In August of this year, the DEA reported that it and its law enforcement partners seized the brightly colored fentanyl and fentanyl pills across 18 states. The fentanyl is believed to be coming into the U.S. from two different Mexican drug cartels.

Any Lab Test Now® Can Provide Answers

Fentanyl is addictive and deadly. If you are concerned about yourself or a loved one, Any Lab Test Now® can assist with a variety of drug test screenings that can provide the answers you are looking for. These tests are recommended for those concerned about suspected abuse or misuse of specified drugs by a friend or family member, including teenagers. Individuals who think they may have been unknowingly given a drug should also consider these tests.

ADVANCED DRUG TEST PANEL WITH EXPANDED OPIATES AND FENTANYL

This lab-based test will identify recent use of the following:

  • Heroin
  • Amphetamines
  • Barbiturates
  • Benzodiazepines
  • Cocaine
  • Opiates (Expanded)
  • Fentanyl
  • Marijuana
  • Ecstasy
  • Methadone
  • PCP
  • Propoxyphene

FOURTEEN (14) PANEL DRUG SCREEN, INCLUDING FENTANYL, K2 ALCOHOL (ORAL FLUID)

Using a standard oral fluid sample collected, we offer rapid screening for fentanyl in oral fluid as part of a broader panel that includes 14 classes of commonly abused and misused drugs or their metabolites. Fentanyl use can be detected in oral fluid for up to 36 hours after exposure. A positive result for fentanyl is considered suggestive of use in that timeframe.

This rapid test is intended for the qualitative detection of the following:

  • Amphetamines
  • Barbiturates
  • Benzodiazepines
  • Buprenorphine
  • Cocaine
  • Opiates
  • Fentanyl
  • K2 (Spice)
  • Marijuana
  • Methadone
  • Oxycodone
  • PCP
  • Alcohol

TWELVE (12) PANEL RAPID DRUG SCREEN, INCLUDING FENTANYL

This panel uses a standard urine sample offering rapid screening for fentanyl as part of a broader panel that includes 12 classes of commonly abused and misused drugs or their metabolites. Fentanyl use can be detected in urine for up to 72 hours after exposure. A positive result for fentanyl is considered suggestive of use in that timeframe.

This rapid test is intended for the qualitative detection of the following:

  • Amphetamines
  • Barbiturates
  • Benzodiazepines
  • Buprenorphine
  • Cocaine
  • Opiates
  • Fentanyl
  • Marijuana
  • Ecstasy
  • Methadone
  • Oxycodone

You can Depend on Any Lab Test Now®

Any Lab Test Now® is a resource you can use for your family’s health and wellness. The lab tests we provide are confidential, affordable, and convenient. You own the results, and you choose how to proceed with them.

Any Lab Test Now® can help by providing the lab tests you need to get the answers you need. Call now to schedule an appointment at a location near you.