Author: James Anderson

Fentanyl and Xylazine Test Strips

how to test for fentanyl in drugs

We recommend that drug checking research and services expand beyond opioid consumers and nightclub and dance festival attendees. This would allow us to determine the risk of exposure to adulterants (e.g., in the general population) and help determine whether high-risk populations should indeed remain the main/only focus. We believe drug checking should be included in surveillance efforts, and more research is needed to overcome barriers to drug checking and to further assess the impact of test results on behavior change. Drug checking services invite drug consumers to anonymously submit drug samples for chemical analysis and provide feedback of results. Drug checking appears to be more common in recent years in response to increases in fentanyl-related deaths and the proliferation of new psychoactive substances (NPS).

how to test for fentanyl in drugs

Of those who detected fentanyl, more than 40% decided to use a smaller amount of the drugs or to go more slowly to reduce their risk of overdosing. A similar percentage chose to use their drugs with other people (instead of alone) so someone would be around to call 911 or give them naloxone (Narcan), if needed, to reverse an opioid overdose. If you use opioids, coke, meth, or other illegal drugs, you might want to be extra-cautious that you’re taking what you think you are right now. Luckily, there’s a common, easy, and cheap way to do that—we’ll get into drug testing strips in a second, but in terms of why you’d bother with them to begin with, let’s talk about fentanyl. End OverdoseThe organization provides training and tools to treat people who overdose and prevent death through education, medical intervention and public awareness. It sells packages of five fentanyl testing strips online for $7.99.

What should I avoid while using fentanyl?

We believe testing of drug product and biospecimens each provide valuable drug-checking or drug exposure-related information. Although both direct and proxy drug checking studies are valuable from a surveillance perspective (e.g., to triangulate findings), only direct drug checking can provide information to consumers prior to consumption. Consumers may not always have the opportunity to receive their results from biospecimen testing, and dissemination may be at the aggregate level when the study is completed. Drug checking research and services largely focus on opioid consumers and nightclub and dance festival attendees, but more focus may be needed on the general population. Drug checking results can inform surveillance efforts, and more research is needed to overcome barriers to drug checking and to focus on whether test results indeed affect behavior change. Xylazine test strips (XTS) are small strips of paper that can be placed within a personal sample of drugs to detect the presence of xylazine.

  1. Fentanyl is a synthetic opioid used for treating severe pain and is 50 to 100 times more potent than morphine.
  2. When buying online, use extreme caution to be sure the tests are valid.
  3. Xylazine is dangerous because it can depress breathing, blood pressure, heart rate and body temperature to critical levels and, in combination with fentanyl, can make overdose reversal challenging.
  4. No psychedelics or other party drugs (e.g., ecstasy) tested positive for fentanyl.
  5. The remaining studies focused on fentanyl testing only used test strips to test urine of heroin injectors [14], opioid consumers [15], and cocaine and opioid consumers [16].
  6. Luckily, there’s a common, easy, and cheap way to do that—we’ll get into drug testing strips in a second, but in terms of why you’d bother with them to begin with, let’s talk about fentanyl.

Most are at least 96% accurate in detecting fentanyl as well as many fentanyl analogs (drugs that are chemically similar but not identical to fentanyl). Other drugs may interact with fentanyl, including prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products. Fentanyl sublingual spray should be used together with other non-fentanyl narcotic pain medicines that are used around the clock.

What is a fentanyl patch?

Some studies found that having to visit a specific place at a specific time could limit interest in testing [32,33]. Some target populations may also not be willing to wait more than a few minutes for test results [32]. Although most studies focused mainly or solely on fentanyl testing, one study [21] collected biospecimens from dance festival attendees to test for NPS exposure. The researchers used LC-QTOF MS to test saliva samples, and positive screen results were later confirmed using LC–MS/MS. Other research from Brown University showed that half of test strip users found fentanyl in their drug supply.

Research reported in this publication was supported by the National Institute on Drug Abuse of the National Institutes of Health under Award Numbers K01DA (J.J.P.) and R01DA (J.J.P.). The National Drug and Alcohol Research Centre is supported by funding from the Australian Government under the Drug and Alcohol Program. The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of the funders.

Serious fentanyl side effects

“Given the current state of the drug market, we recommend that folks test all drugs with fentanyl test strips,” said Kristin Karas, chief operating officer at the harm-reduction organization DanceSafe. To keep yourself a little safer as you use, here’s how to add a small step into your drug use that might make an enormous difference for your well-being. The work at the North Carolina lab is part of a strategy known as harm reduction, which aims not to lead users to abstinence but to give them the tools to use drugs safely, keeping them from infections, injuries and death.

There was somewhat of a dichotomy between studies testing for fentanyl and studies testing for a wider range of substances. With regard to testing of party drugs (e.g., ecstasy), most studies tested drugs or collected biospecimens for testing at dance festivals. A study examining biospecimens of festival attendees [21] reported that 30% of ecstasy consumers tested positive for NPS (mainly synthetic cathinones) after denying use.

Fentanyl patches are applied to the skin to treat moderate to severe chronic pain around the clock. Fentanyl patches are used when other pain treatments, such as non-opioid pain medicines or immediate-release opioid medicines, do not treat your pain well enough or you cannot tolerate them. This is not all the information you need to know about fentanyl test strips for safe and effective use and does not take the place of your healthcare provider’s advice. Review and follow the full test strip information before use, as directions may vary among tests. Discuss this information and any questions you have with your doctor or other health care provider.

Although they can easily detect the most abundant molecule, any other compounds (i.e., adulterants or cutting agents) might go undetected. A benefit regarding Raman, however, is that researchers do not have to touch the substance (which helps avoid potential legal risk). Methods such as MS, although expensive, provide quantitative results with low pg-to-ng-level detection. Portable versions are becoming available, but at the moment, MS testing is still mostly conducted in laboratories.