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Heroin

Heroin
INN: Diamorphine
Heroin - Heroine.svg
Heroin-from-xtal-horizontal-3D-balls.png
Clinical data
Pronunciation Heroin: /ˈhɛrɪn/
AHFS/Drugs.com heroin
Dependence
liability
Physical: Very high
Psychological: Very high
Addiction
liability
Highly
Routes of
administration
Intravenous, inhalation, transmucosal, by mouth, intranasal, rectal, intramuscular, subcutaneous, intrathecal
Drug class opiate
ATC code N07BC06 (WHO)
Legal status
Legal status
Pharmacokinetic data
Bioavailability <35% (by mouth), 44–61% (inhaled)
Protein binding 0% (morphine metabolite 35%)
Metabolism liver
Onset of action Within minutes
Biological half-life 2–3 minutes
Duration of action 4 to 5 hours
Excretion 90% kidney as glucuronides, rest biliary
Identifiers
Synonyms Diamorphine, Diacetylmorphine, Acetomorphine, (Dual) Acetylated morphine, Morphine diacetate
CAS Number 561-27-3 YesY
PubChem (CID) 5462328
DrugBank DB01452 YesY
ChemSpider 4575379 YesY
UNII 8H672SHT8E YesY
ChEBI CHEBI:27808 YesY
ChEMBL CHEMBL459324 YesY
ECHA InfoCard 100.008.380
Chemical and physical data
Formula C21H23NO5
Molar mass 369.41 g/mol
3D model (Jmol) Interactive image
  

Heroin, also known as diamorphine among other names, is an opiate typically used as a recreational drug for its euphoric effects. Medically it is occasionally used to relieve pain and as a form of opioid replacement therapy alongside counseling. Heroin is typically injected, usually into a vein; however, it can also be smoked, snorted or inhaled. Onset of effects is usually rapid and lasts for a few hours.

Common side effects include respiratory depression (decreased breathing) and about a quarter of those who use heroin become physically dependent. Other side effects can include abscesses, infected heart valves, blood borne infections, constipation, and pneumonia. After a history of long-term use, withdrawal symptoms can begin within hours of last use. When given by injection into a vein, heroin has two to three times the effect as a similar dose of morphine. It typically comes as a white or brown powder.

Treatment of heroin addiction often includes behavioral therapy and medications. Medications used may include methadone or naltrexone. A heroin overdose may be treated with naloxone. An estimated 17 million people as of 2015 use opiates such as heroin, which together with opioids resulted in 122,000 deaths. The total number of opiate users has increased from 1998 to 2007 after which it has remained more or less stable. In the United States about 1.6 percent of people have used heroin at some point in time. When people die from overdosing on a drug, the drug is usually an opioid.



  • Itching
  • Flushing/Rash
  • 1957 film Monkey on My Back based on the book about his addiction by boxer Barney Ross.
  • A Hatful of Rain, the 1957 film based on the 1955 play by Michael V. Gazzo about an addicted Korean War veteran.
  • The 1959 play The Connection by Jack Gelber, and the 1961 film adaptation of it, concern a group of addicts, some of whom are jazz musicians, waiting for their dealer.
  • The film The Panic in Needle Park starring Al Pacino and Kitty Winn is the story of a young woman who falls in love with a heroin addict in New York. It was one of Pacino's first roles.
  • The film American Gangster is loosely based on real-life drug dealer Frank Lucas, who sold heroin. Lucas was portrayed by Denzel Washington.
  • The film Gia, based on a true story of model Gia Carangi, is about her addiction to and use of heroin and how it affected her.
  • The film Christiane F. – Wir Kinder vom Bahnhof Zoo (We the children of Bahnhof Zoo) is about heroin use and street culture in West Berlin in the 1970s, centering on a 13-year-old girl's decision to experiment with the drug.
  • The film Trainspotting chronicles the exploits of a group of heroin addicts in Edinburgh, Scotland, during the late 1980s.
  • The film Requiem for a Dream tells the story of four drug (mainly heroin) addicts who can only witness their disastrous habits spiral out of control into the darkest, ugliest and dirtiest sides of humanity.
  • In season three of the American television series 24, the show's protagonist Jack Bauer is seen battling a heroin addiction after having spent months undercover working with a drug lord family in Mexico.
  • The film The Basketball Diaries follows protagonist Jim Carrol's addiction to heroin and getting off heroin. Leonardo DiCaprio portrayed Carrol.
  • The film Pulp Fiction, featuring John Travolta as Vincent Vega, shows IV use of the drug, and Uma Thurman's character Mia Wallace overdoses.
  • The television series Breaking Bad features Jane Margolis, Jesse Pinkman's girlfriend/landlady, who is in rehab for heroin usage, but gets back into using it and introduces Jesse to it, but later dies due to the combination of an overdose and Walter White's refusal to save her life.
  • The film Rush (1991) starring Jennifer Jason Leigh, Jason Patric, Sam Elliott and Gregg Allman is a fictionalized depiction of a heroin-trade-based corruption scandal that wracked the Tyler, Texas, US Police Department in the late seventies; undercover detective characters played by Leigh and Patric inadvertently become heroin addicts in the process of attempting to gather evidence against the local drug dealer played by Allman.
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Wikipedia

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