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Surge of overdoses prompt drug warning in Sudbury

Health officials in say there has been a spike in drug overdoses in the city, as well as unexpected reactions from the use of substances in Sudbury and area.

“There have been multiple reports of a very strong purple substance circulating,” the Community Drug Strategy said in an alert.

“Effects include heavy nods, laboured breathing, and inability to wake with ease.”

The overdoses are a reminder that street drugs can be cut with substances such as “benzos (benzodiazepines), xylazine, fentanyl, or carfentanil,” the group said.

“Frontline workers warn that more toxic substances may be circulating locally.”

An overdose occurs when a person uses a substance, and their body is unable to handle the effects. As a result, the brain is unable to control basic life functions.

“The person might pass out, stop breathing or experience a seizure,” the group said.

“Overdoses can be fatal.”

Opioid overdose symptoms include:

• fingernails and lips turn blue or purplish black

• skin turns bluish purple, grayish, or ashen, depending on skin tone

• dizziness and confusion

• the person can’t be woken up

• choking, gurgling, or snoring sounds

• slow, weak, or no breathing

• drowsiness or difficulty staying awake

Due to benzodiazepines (benzos) toxicity, an overdose may last for hours and look like:

• extreme sleepiness or passing out

• poor balance and movement control

• slurred speech

• blackouts and memory loss

“Avoid mixing drugs, including prescribed, over the counter, and illegal drugs,” the group said.

“If you have not used in a while, start with a lower dose. Your tolerance may be lower.”

For a free naloxone kit, contact The Point at Public Health Sudbury & Districts, Réseau Access Network, Sudbury Action Centre for Youth (SACY), or ask your local hospital or pharmacy. Or click here.

“Be cautious if using drugs and please distribute this information widely to help save lives,” the group said. Top Stories


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