Sunday, November 01, 2009

Richard and an Unwanted Drug

Last night, Richard called me at about 01h30, saying he had been out with friends to a nightclub, and he felt weird and thought his drink had been spiked.

I went over there. He was flushed, had been vomiting, had a rapid pulse, sweaty, disorientated, having hallucinations such as seeing everything green. He was having mood swings and was complaining of a burning throat and tongue and of a strong salty taste. I watched him carefully, prepared to call for help if necessary. I had him drink a lot of water to flush that poison out of his system. I also took a jam jar to collect a urine specimen in because I wanted it available in case he got worse and the ambulance had to be called. 

I looked it up on the Internet, and believe he had GHB, or Fantasy. The information site I used was Young Adults Health If the link doesn't click properly, copy and paste this into your browser

What is fantasy?

  • Fantasy is a colourless and odourless drug with the technical name of gamma hydroxybutyrate (or GHB).
  • GHB is usually found in liquid form, but can be in powder or capsule form.
  • It has a bitter or salty flavour similar to the taste of baking soda.
  • Fantasy is a depressant that slows down the activity of the brain.
  • It is usually taken orally.
  • An average or moderate dose of this drug is 5-15ml
  • It can take anywhere between 5 to 20 minutes after it is taken for the person to feel any effect
  • It is difficult to know how long the feelings from the drug will last, but with a moderate dose they usually last between 1 to 3 hours.
  • One of the most dangerous aspects of using GHB is the small difference between the amount needed for the wanted effect and the amount which can cause an overdose.
  • Over half of a group of people who had used fantasy reported that they had accidently overdosed on it.
  • Overdoses can occur even when the person had used the drug before.

High doses of fantasy (depending on the person) can have the following effects:

  • blackouts and memory loss
  • tremors and shaking
  • shortness of breath
  • irregular heart beat (palpitations)
  • impaired mobility
  • distorted speech
  • disorientation, confusion and hallucinations
  • convulsions
  • nausea and vomiting
  • some loss of vision
  • coma.

All of these effects can be worse if the drug is mixed with alcohol or other drugs such as ecstasy.

If someone has any of these symptoms, it is important to get medical help quickly. If you suspect a friend has taken fantasy, tell the medical or emergency staff this, as this information can enable them to better help your friend.

The above is copied from Young Adult Health. Over the years, when researching health matters, I have found consistently that the best sites are Australian. They give the best information in clear language. I tried looking this up on NHS Direct but all they had on the subject was treatment of addictions. And that was after I had tracked down what the drug probably was on other sites.

This is beyond a joke. Michelle had had her drink spiked some years ago, and now Richard! Don't people realise how dangerous this practice is? The effects are made worse when mixed with alcohol, and Richard, Steve and Alice had been drinking in the nightclub, Jolsons. I don't know why people go there, as it has the scuzziest name in Folkestone. I stayed with him for a few hours until the drug wore off and got home just after 04h00. My scooter had been interfered with, but there was no damage. The rear basket had been rifled through and whoever it was decided they could do without the dog's water or my rain hat or my rain poncho and gloves. The indicators were on and began blinking when I turned the key. And somehow or other the whole scooter had been moved back a couple of inches because it was too close to the fence for me to put my seat in the upright position. I had to move forward before doing that. How?? Why??

Richard is at work today, not feeling too brilliant, but he will be ok. I'm really cross about this, and the fact that Michelle had had her drink spiked a few years ago, as has Sean's respectable daughter, Marie. I will talk to Richard and Michelle to see if they are brave enough to start a new fashion of taking infant feeding cups to nightclubs, because they are much harder to interfere with, and some attractive ones with straws are available.

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