Fentanyl crisis sparks US sanctions on Chinese companies

Visual Representation of Fentanyl drug
Visual Representation of Fentanyl drug

United States: The United States imposed economic sanctions on several Chinese companies and charged a few Chinese nationals with smuggling opioids, including Fentanyl – which is a highly addictive drug. 

Earlier this year, the charges and sanctions were brought by the US Attorney’s office in Florida, as well as the Department of Treasury. According to Al Jazeera news, Merrick Garland – the US attorney general, said, “Fentanyl supply chain that terminates in the death of Americans begins with these chemical firms from China.” The charges are, however, strongly condemned by China.

Deaths in the US due to Fentanyl overdose

According to Al Jazeera, in 2021, at least 106,000 people died because of drug overdosing. For two-thirds of all those deaths, using synthetic opioids, specifically Fentanyl.

Fentanyl is powerful, cheap, and has an ease of being smuggled. It has disastrous effects, especially on new users. Moreover, it is a major contributor to fatal and nonfatal overdoses in the US, as per the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Over 150 people die every day from overdoses related to synthetic opioids like Fentanyl, the CDC reported.

What exactly is Fentanyl?

Fentanyl is a strong prescription-type narcotic drug. A medically approved drug, especially for pain relief.

Fentanyl drug | Credits: Reuters

It is approximately 100 times more potent than morphine and 50 times more powerful than Heroin. However, the drug is available for medical use, especially for pain management. But the overdoses of Fentanyl have killed more than 150 people in the US. 

There are many factors that contribute to a deadly overdose of Fentanyl; according to DEA, 2 mg of Fentanyl is considered a lethal dose. To understand better, a lethal dose of Fentanyl is smaller than a tip of a pencil.

Different types of Fentanyl

There are essentially two kinds of Fentanyl. The first one is prescription fentanyl or the pharmaceutical form that is prescribed by doctors in hospitals and medical facilities all over the world, usually for pain management purposes, and the other one is illegally manufactured Fentanyl.

It is to be noted that both types of drugs are manufactured synthetically, and illegally manufactured Fentanyl is primarily responsible for the deaths caused by overdose.

What are the effects of Fentanyl on the body?

Fentanyl is currently the strongest painkiller available for managing patients. It is about a hundred times more potent than morphine, the most utilized opiate analgesic among painful conditions.

Fentanyl interacts with the opioid receptors within the human brain, affecting the sections of the brain responsible for pain management and emotions.

Fentanyl drug | Credits: Getty Images

After several hits of opioid drugs, the brain adjusts its functions, rendering itself unresponsive towards any other pleasure apart from that arising out of the opioid.

Some symptoms of fentanyl usage include mood swings, hallucinations, forgetfulness, sleepiness, vomiting, and loss of consciousness. There are breathing complications and tightening of the chest wall, too. This also results in skipped beats, constipation, and reduced passage of food through the intestines. These are long-term outcomes associated with the use that lead to health conditions like heart attack, lowered immunity level, anxiety, depression, and others.

What’s your Reaction?
+1
0
+1
0
+1
0
+1
0
+1
0
+1
0