A dangerous and potentially deadly drug is easily being sold online, and the catch is that doctors said it is perfectly legal.
It is a designer methamphetamine called Cloud 9 and is becoming a staple in the drug scene.
It is a liquid made from a chemical found in bath salts and air fresheners.
“It's very dangerous,” said Dr. Mark Neavyn, a medical toxicologist at Hartford Hospital. “It can be a lethal experiment.”
Before he came to Connecticut, Neavyn worked in Michigan, a hot spot for the drug.
He said Cloud 9 has been around for a few years but the recipe has changed.
“What's concerning about Cloud 9 now is that they are making it in a different form, so that it's more easily vaporized or smoked,” Neavyn said.
Cloud 9 is consumed in numerous different ways, but is often smoked in an e-cigarette or mixed in a drink.
Last month, six Michigan teenagers were hospitalized after trying the deadly, yet legal, drug.
While police in Michigan said the drug can be bought cheap at gas stations, there may be an even easier way.
“On the internet, everything is available,” Neavyn added.
The Eyewitness News I-Team checked out some online forums where internet-savvy users discuss drug activity.
People looking for any type of drug can make connections with sellers on some online forums, and then make a deal. As easy as it may be for curious teens to get their hands on the drug, the real dangers may not be understood.
“These are unregulated drugs of abuse, we have no idea how much is in a bottle of Cloud 9, and one bottle might have 1 mg another bottle might have a gram,” Neavyn said.
Side effects from the drug can include but are not limited to high blood pressure, paranoia, hallucinations and suicidal thoughts.
Some overdoses can also cause a person's heart to stop, and with the drug being legal, and readily available, many feel that they are at a loss.
“States are taking action, like Michigan has been active in trying to pull this from the shelves since it's been so much trouble. So hopefully Connecticut will be equally proactive and be on the lookout for this kind of drug,” Neavyn added.
Parents are urged to be aware of the drug and, as always, pay attention to online activity of children.
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