Fentanyl is a high potency and synthetic opioid causing overdose and death in the United States. This
highly addictive, synthetic opioid is 50 to 300 times more potent than morphine, making 2 milligrams of
fentanyl a deadly dosage. While it was originally invented to treat severe cancer pain, its illegal use is
growing swiftly and leading to rapid respiratory depression and damage of the internal organs, often
resulting in death.
Statistics indicate that fentanyl is currently the greatest drug threat in this country. Rates of overdose
deaths involving fentanyl have increased drastically over the last few years:
- Among teenagers, overdose deaths increased 94% from 2019 to 2020.
- Fentanyl overdose rates are rising 5 times faster than heroin overdoses.
- Fentanyl is a factor in 53% of overdose deaths nationwide.
- In 2020 alone, there were 42,700 fentanyl overdose deaths.
Signs of fentanyl use and addiction include:
- Loss of consciousness
- Slowed breathing
- Rapid heart rate
- Euphoric or depressed mood
- Swollen hands or feet
- Slurred speech