Doctors are warning cocaine users about a potentially serious side-effect associated with cocaine distributed in the Los Angeles and New York areas. Doctors at LA BioMed at David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA say drug dealers are cutting cocaine with levamisole, used for deworming livestock.
The warning follows reports of several patients developing serious skin reactions after smoking or snorting cocaine believed to be contaminated with the veterinary drug. According to the U.S. Department of Justice, up to 70% of cocaine in the U.S. is contaminated with levamisole, which is cheap and widely available.
“In one of the more interesting (cases), the patient used cocaine again and developed the same skin reaction again. He then switched drug dealers and the problem cleared up.”