Pattaya Daily News

25 January 2013 :: 14:01:25 pm 70747

Smuggled New Pills Could Cause Eternal Sleep

Recreational pill users are warned to beware of potent new sleeping pills recently smuggled into southern Thailand. The pills can cause death by overdose or by consuming them with alcohol. The pills contain the drug Phenazepam or Fenazepam, which is 10 times stronger than Diazepam pills, also known as Valium.
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The Hardyai police station in Songkhla province recently seized a smuggled batch of 2,940 tablets of Phenazepam, which they sent to the medical sciences department in Songkhla to analyze.

One side of the pills have a symbol of a 4-pointed star and the numbers “028” imprinted on them. The other side of the pills have the number “5” imprinted. The pills were in red clear plastic bags that had “Erimin 5” written on them.

The identification laboratory of the Bureau of Drug and Narcotic, Department of Medical Science found that the sleeping pills, Phenazepam or Fenazepam, are categorized in the benzodiazepines class, and are 10 times stronger than Diazepam (Valium) sedatives.

Dr. Nipon Popattanachai MD., the director general of the Department of Medical Sciences, said the seized pills can be purchased in pharmacies with a prescription from a doctor. When someone takes it, it would make the person sleep more than 60 hours.

However, the person might also suffer side effects including drowsiness, dizziness, loss of balance, confusion and loss of memory. Also, if the person stops taking the medicine suddenly after taking high doses, or for a long period of time, withdrawal symptoms may result that could cause death.

The doctor warned that using the pills in conjunction with drinking alcohol, or taking other substances that affect the central nervous system can also cause death.

Doctor Boonchai Somboonsuk MD, the secretary general of the food and drug board, said that the Erimin 5 has been found to contain 5 milligrams of Nimetazepam, which is a sleeping drug in Benzodiazepines group.

In Thailand, the drug is categorized as a Type-2 drug, under the 1975 bill for substances influencing the mind and nerves. But Nimetazepam is not on the approved list of registered drugs in Thailand. So it may be assumed that the Phenazepam was produced as Erimin 5, to replace Nimetazepam and avoid the law, because Phenazepam is not classified as a controlled substance in Thailand.

Phenazepam was synthesized for the first time in Russia in 1974, and used in medicine in Russia and some Eastern European countries for the treatment of neurological diseases and epilepsy.

But in the last 2-3 years, Phenazepam has been misused by recreational drug users who ingest the drug by eating it, placing it under the tongue, or injecting it. In the U.S.A., people have died from overdosing on the drug.

Photo : Internet   Category : Health

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