Synthetic Drugs

Main Points

  • Synthetic (chemically enhanced) drugs are rapidly becoming popular, widely available and widely abused.
  • Over the past several years, these previously unseen and unknown drugs have surfaced in our communities, being sold in convenience stores, head shops, and on the internet.
  • More than 95 percent of emergency physicians polled in 2016 said that the number of patients they’ve treated for synthetic drug use had either increased or remained the same from 2014 to 2015.
  • Nearly 90 percent of emergency physicians polled reported seeing violent acts associated with the use of these drugs.
  • ACEP advocated for legislation (S.3187) to ban some chemicals that are currently, and legally, sold in the United States — it was signed into law in 2012. This is an important step forward, but more government intervention is needed.

Synthetic Drug Fact Sheet

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