Phoenix toxicologist warns of increasing sales of more potent form of street heroin

Mar 1, 2016, 5:30 AM
(AP Photo)...
(AP Photo)
(AP Photo)

PHOENIX — An ongoing push for a stronger form of street heroin is prompting some dealers to lace their products with a more powerful opiate, according to a Phoenix toxicologist.

Dr. Frank LoVecchio with the Banner Poison and Drug Information Center said the opiate, Fentanyl, has a much stronger concentration than heroin or morphine alone.

The mix of heroin and Fentanyl gives users a stronger high, prompting drug dealers to take notice in what has become a competitive heroin marketplace.

However, LoVecchio said it has also put users in comas, stopped their breathing and has even led to death.

“For reasons of competition, among dealers where they want to have the strongest product – or perhaps maliciously where they want to harm someone who uses it — they have added Fentanyl to (heroin),” he said.

LoVecchio said dealers use the opiate in their product because it is cheap to manufacture and delivers a better product.

“It’s unfortunate, but it makes the news every time someone dies,” LoVecchio said.

Phoenix is not the first city where officials have seen the opiate being used: Cities in Ohio, Tennessee and California have reported dealers substituting Fentanyl for less potent drugs, such as oxycodone and Percocet.

Lifetime Windows & Doors

We want to hear from you.

Have a story idea or tip? Pass it along to the KTAR News team here.

Arizona News

(City of Peoria Photo)...
Audrey Jensen/Phoenix Business Journal

Peoria approves tax incentive agreement with mixed-use project developer

Peoria moved forward with what could be the final development agreement needed for a new mixed-use office project called Stadium Point.
7 hours ago
Follow @KTAR923...
KTAR.com

Downtown Chandler hosts life-sized holiday treats display ‘Sugarland’

Downtown Chandler kicked off the holiday season with an interactive Christmas display filled with life-sized treats on Saturday.
7 hours ago
(Facebook Photo/Phoenix Police Department)...
KTAR.com

Police arrest suspect in stabbing death of 33-year-old man in Phoenix

Police arrested and charged a man with murder in the stabbing death of a 33-year-old man in Phoenix late Saturday, authorities said.
1 day ago
(Facebook File Photo/Phoenix Police Department)...
KTAR.com

Man taken to hospital by family after being shot in Phoenix dies

A 33-year-old man who was taken to a hospital by family members Friday night after being shot in Phoenix has died.
1 day ago
(Facebook Photo/Phoenix Police Department)...
KTAR.com

Police seek public’s help in shooting death of man in Phoenix

Police are asking the public for information in the shooting death of a 30-year-old man in the parking lot of a business in Phoenix.
1 day ago
(Metro-Phoenix Public Affairs Council Photo)...
KTAR.com

Christmas lights return to Latter-day Saints temple in Mesa after 5-year hiatus

Christmas lights have returned to the Latter-day Saints temple in Mesa this season after more than five years since they were last showcased.
1 day ago

Sponsored Articles

...
Children’s Cancer Network

Children’s Cancer Network celebrates cancer-fighting superheroes, raises funds during September’s Childhood Cancer Awareness Month

Jace Hyduchak was like most other kids in his kindergarten class: He loved to play basketball, dress up like his favorite superheroes and jump as high as his pint-sized body would take him on his backyard trampoline.
...
SCHWARTZ LASER EYE CENTER

Key dates for Arizona sports fans to look forward to this fall

Fall brings new beginnings in different ways for Arizona’s professional sports teams like the Cardinals and Coyotes.
...
Day & Night Air Conditioning, Heating and Plumbing

Here are 4 signs the HVAC unit needs to be replaced

Pool renovations and kitchen upgrades may seem enticing, but at the forefront of these investments arguably should be what residents use the most. In a state where summertime is sweltering, access to a functioning HVAC unit can be critical.
Phoenix toxicologist warns of increasing sales of more potent form of street heroin