DEA says krokodil users get what they deserve (YouTube)
A spokesman for the US Drugs Enforcement Administration has told IBTimes UK that people who use the flesh-eating drug krokodil "get what they deserve".
Krokodil, or desomorphine, has a similar effect to heroin but it is much cheaper to produce as it is made with household substances such as paint thinner, lighter fluid and codeine.
Rusty Payne, spokesman for the DEA said that krokodil, which became popular in Russia around 10 years ago, is not a "major problem" in the US yet, adding: "There's a lot of misinformation and a lot of things people think are one thing and is actually something else."
However, he also noted that the DEA expects to see more cases of krokodil emerging in the future.
Krokodil rots the flesh from the inside out (YouTube)
"Any emerging designer drug is concerning so we wouldn't be surprised if we see more of it. We've had a huge influx of designer drugs," he said. "When you're injecting things that contain gasoline and paint thinner, you get what you deserve.
"Desomorphine is a controlled substance, it's dangerous and addictive in itself but when you start dealing with other adulterants and additives you get more problems.
"We don't have any known instance of krokodil at the DEA, and we've had no samples of krokodil sent to DEA labs."
Krokodil was first reported in the US in September, when two people in Phoenix, Arizona sought treatment for its effects at the Banner's Poison Control Centre.
Users live less than three years on average (YouTube)
Six further cases were reported in Illinois earlier this month, while health officials in Utah have confirmed the drug may have been found in the state. Other unconfirmed reports have surfaced in Oklahoma, Nevada and New York.
Krokodil is extremely deadly and regular users normally do not survive for more than three years. The drug eats the users flesh from the inside out. It dissolves the user's jawbones and causes blood vessels to burst, leaving the skin green and scaly, where the name krokodil came from.
The flesh destroyed becomes gangrenous and often users have to have limbs amputated.
Users often have to have limbs amputated (YouTube)
Payne said new drugs are being created overseas and are then making their way to the US.
"Any time you see something that could be a disturbing drug trend it's disturbing, you have these labs oversees in China, Russia and India that are sending all kinds of synthetic chemicals and they're not testing, they're made in unregulated labs, people are abusing them and bad things are happening.
"We're still sorting out this whole krokodil thing to see what's happening out there."
Krokodil Invades US: Flesh Eating Drug Sold as Heroin [GRAPHIC PHOTOS]
Krokodil Loose in UK? Warning Signs Flesh-Eating Drug That Turns Skin to Scales Has Entered Britain [GRAPHIC PHOTOS]
Krokodil: Flesh-Eating Drug That Turns Skin to Scales Hits Streets in US [GRAPHIC IMAGES]
Krokodil: Chicago Users Describe Rotting From Inside Out by the Flesh-Eating Drug [GRAPHIC PHOTOS]
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