SAMHSA’s HHRC Shares Fact Sheet on Xylazine Basics, Overdose Prevention, Harm Reduction, Wound Care

August 29, 2023

The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration's (SAMHSA's) Homeless & Housing Resource Center (HHRC) has shared a fact sheet on Xylazine basics, providing information on overdose prevention, harm reduction, wound care, and more

Xylazine, also known as tranq or tranq-dope, is a non-opioid, unscheduled veterinary tranquilizer that is used as an additive in the illicit drug supply.

Xylazine has similar properties to the prescription-only medication clonidine, which lowers blood pressure and heart rate, and can decrease anxiety. It can be ingested orally, inhaled, sniffed, smoked, or injected, and it has been introduced to the drug supply because it is cheap and easy to obtain, and because it enhances the sedative effect of other substances.

Most notably, xylazine is being added to heroin and fentanyl, and has been reported in other drugs including cocaine. Most individuals who consume xylazine do so unknowingly because it is added to other drugs.

The fact sheet provides further information on where xylazine has been found in the drug supply, the major effects of xylazine use, responding to overdose in communities where xylazine is present, xylazine withdrawal, xylazine-related wounds, harm reduction interventions for xylazine, and more.

Click here to access the fact sheet and for more information.

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