Powerful New Narcotic in Region

Published 02/24 2014 05:33PM

Updated 02/24 2014 05:38PM

ALTOONA, BLAIR COUNTY - A new more powerful narcotic is now in our region. Zohydro is a pure hydrocodone product  that could be up to ten times more powerful than other forms of the drug. The opioid is in powder form in a capsule which makes it easy to snort or mix with saline and inject.

Pennsylvania's attorney general joined 28 colleagues from  across the country in asking the FDA to reconsider its approval of the drug, but that hasn't happened. The medication has been shipped to our region and is now available to be prescribed.

Unlike some other forms of hydrocodone, Zohydro has no added ingredient that could help prevent abuse. Local drug abuse professionals say anyone who's prescribed the medication for pain needs to keep tight control over it.
Judy Rosser, the executive director of the Blair County Drug and Alcohol Program (DAP) says, "one of the main diversion points we see,  is around familiy members giong in getting into your purse, not taking your whole prescription, just taking a few out at a time or they may be stealing your prescription."
Rosser wants to remind people that Zohydro, like other forms of hydrocodone is highly addictive. Doctors can only prescribe it for 30 days with no refills.

The Department of Health and Human Services sent out a pharmaceutical bulletin on Monday to alert law enforcement and drug abuse personnel that Zohydro was going to be on the market soon.

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