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I Want a New Drug
by Dan Richards

Not a pretty sight

If anyone thinks that it might sound like fun to grab a bottle of cough syrup and go to a party -consider the following. Negative side effects and dangers include: nausea, acute diarrhea, vomiting (also projectile), allergic reactions, hot flashes, dizziness, psychotic breaks, psychological addiction and depression, irreversible brain damage and there is even something called Olney's lesions that may occur in the brain from frequent use.

DXM at any level, effects the body in a similar way to alcohol -only more profoundly. Physical activities deteriorate quickly, especially at higher doses. Walking becomes impossible or takes on a gait known as "Robo walk". Vision becomes blurred and/or crossed. Speech is also greatly affected, resulting in slurring or strange utterances. Being in public in this type of condition can be extremely dangerous, and definitely not pretty. You won't exactly be the life of the party if your neon red projectile vomit splashes all over your friends parents' living room.

So, who needs to know all this stuff?

You do. If you've read this far, you must have some interest. You might be a teenager, a parent, a teacher, an EMT, a doctor, a police officer or even an addict. There are resources you should know about. If you know anyone in the health care field -please pass on this article along with the hypertext links. DXM use is not widely known in hospital emergency rooms, and there have been studies on certain antidotal drugs that may aid in the case of an overdose.

Nalaxone has been shown to be antidotal to some of the effects of DXM -although there certainly needs to be more research conducted. An injection of Nalaxone delivered by an EMT can be effective in combating respiratory depression. A dose of benzodiazepines administered by injection can often help stabilize a "bad trip". There are also DXM induced seizures of which doctors need to be aware.

New York City's hip weekly newspaper, the Village Voice, recently ran a big cover story -with the splashy title: Drug Cocktails: Mixing it up at the clubs. The article mentions and features information on drugs including: crystal methamphetamine, ecstasy (MDMA), ephedrine, GHB (gamma hydroxybutrate), LSD (acid), MAO inhibitors, ketamine and even something called 2CB. There was not one mention of dextromethorphan hydrobromide (DXM)!

There are a few groups on the net who seem to work tirelessly to provide information on DXM. Netscape, which is the company behind the Open Directory Project, has recently awarded several sites on the internet in the category of: Recreation: Drugs: Dissociatives: DXM! On top of the list is the DXM Frequently Asked Questions, or FAQ -written by William E. White. Even more notable, in this writer's opinion, is Third Plateau. These folks not only provide a staggering amount of information, but also run a message board where they answer specific questions, often from people who are confused from bad experiences. For the most part, they do not even condone the use of DXM -but instead are there to provide a service for better health and mental wellbeing.

The use of psychedelic drugs is as old as mankind. Many great thinkers and visionaries have been proponents of their use. In the 20th century such notables as Aldous Huxley, Timothy Leary, John C. Lilly as well as others have studied through personal experiences and written on the subject. What no one proposes, is misuse, abuse or being misinformed and ignorant of very apparent facts. Various cultural and religious traditions also employ powerful psychedelics in ceremonies and healing practices. Admittedly, there are risks involved. All of us take risks in the name of improving the quality of our lives by driving cars, crossing the street and even taking showers. There are potential dangers that will always be present. Being awake and aware, remaining cautious and being informed is the best medicine any of us can take.


b i o

Dan Richards lives in New York City where he tinkers with trying to place his entire recording studio on the internet.

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