NEWS

The infamous five

Besides cannabis and alcohol, ecstasy, LSD, speed, cocaine and special K are the drugs most frequently consumed in places of entertainment. -Ecstasy: Ecstasy (MDMA – methylenodioxymethamphetamine) is a synthetic drug, which is both a psychostimulant, and a hallucinogen like LSD. It was first synthesized in 1910 by two German chemists, but it began to be sold illegally in 1968, on the West Coast of the USA. Initially, it was unaccountably used by psychiatrists as an aphrodisiac, becoming widespread until it was prohibited. It is taken orally in the form of a tablet. – Ketamine (special K): An anesthetic which was approved in America in 1970 for both animals and humans. Ninety percent of ketamine that is sold is bound for veterinary use. As a drug, under the name of special K, it is a hallucinogen. In the USA, it has been dubbed the «date rape» drug. – LSD: Discovered in 1938, this hallucinogen is among the most powerful of chemically synthesized substances. It is made from lysergic acid, which is derived from a fungus on rye and other cereals. LSD, often known as «acid,» is either taken in liquid form or on a piece of paper soaked with one dose. Colorless and odorless, it has a slightly bitter taste. – Cocaine: Addictive psychostimulant widely used in the 1980s and ’90s. It was first discovered in the mid-19th century in the leaves of the coca plant that grows in Peru and Bolivia. In the early 20th century, it was used to produce stimulants and tonics. Cocaine can be found either in powder form (cocaine hydrochloride) which is snorted or injected, or in its base form, «crack,» which is smoked. – Methamphetamine (speed or ice): Psychostimulant which causes severe dependency and huge damage to the central nervous system. Produced in illegal labs, it is known as «speed» or «ice» (the crystal form, which is far more toxic and first appeared in 1985 in Hawaii). Methamphetamine is either inhaled or taken orally.