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  #1  
Old 09-07-2010, 09:38 PM
carnivorousplant carnivorousplant is offline
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What is heroin overdose like?

I wonder about the death of Janis Joplin. Did she just drift off to sleep and not wake up?
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  #2  
Old 09-07-2010, 10:15 PM
Shagnasty Shagnasty is offline
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If you are wondering just about the death itself, it is pretty similar to a lethal injection as long as the heroin is fairly pure. Heroin is directly related to morphine and get metabolized into it so there isn't much pain directly from a heroin overdose. It causes death through respiratory suppression followed by cardiac arrest. That is just looking at it from the perspective of a sudden and large overdose however. Heroin addiction isn't a pretty thing and has all kinds of nasty effects. A prolonged binge that leads to death wouldn't be pretty to watch. The person would likely have poor health in general with lots of unpleasant symptoms including nausea. Other drugs mixed with the heroin could also cause other unpleasant effects.
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Old 09-07-2010, 10:45 PM
outlierrn outlierrn is offline
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Nitpick. It's unconsciousness, respiratory depression, cardiac arrest.
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Old 09-07-2010, 11:09 PM
ivn1188 ivn1188 is offline
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Pure heroin OD's are not as common as people think. A high percentage of deaths are caused by mixing drugs, especially with alcohol, then the person vomits and chokes.

http://www.drugpolicy.org/library/darke2.cfm
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  #5  
Old 09-07-2010, 11:25 PM
drachillix drachillix is offline
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Originally Posted by outlierrn View Post
Nitpick. It's unconsciousness, respiratory depression, cardiac arrest.
Or as it often turns out, unconsciousness, inject Narcan, 2 min later patient sits up, pissed off, ready to fight, because you just sent his ass into cold turkey withdrawl in minutes.
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  #6  
Old 09-08-2010, 01:50 AM
PlainJain PlainJain is offline
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Quote:
What is heroin overdose like?
I'm hoping you don't need answer fast.
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Old 09-08-2010, 05:00 AM
Random Design Random Design is offline
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would the overdoser suffer though? I mean, wouldn't they be high as a kite while their body shut down?
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Old 09-08-2010, 11:00 AM
Qadgop the Mercotan Qadgop the Mercotan is offline
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Originally Posted by Random Design View Post
would the overdoser suffer though? I mean, wouldn't they be high as a kite while their body shut down?
They'd be unconscious.
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  #9  
Old 09-08-2010, 11:13 AM
rhubarbarin rhubarbarin is offline
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I've looked into it already, if I ever decide I need to die (hopefully I'll be able-bodied, have some spare cash, and still know some reliable drug-dealers), this is how I'm doing it: a massive overdose of good-quality heroin. You get super-high, pass out, and die fairly quickly. No pain or bother, and you don't leave any mess behind but your body (as opposed to most other methods which leave behind vomit, blood, general splatter, and an obviously injured body - makes things that much worse for your loved ones or whoever finds you).
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Old 09-08-2010, 11:31 AM
Qadgop the Mercotan Qadgop the Mercotan is offline
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Originally Posted by rhubarbarin View Post
I've looked into it already, if I ever decide I need to die (hopefully I'll be able-bodied, have some spare cash, and still know some reliable drug-dealers), this is how I'm doing it: a massive overdose of good-quality heroin. You get super-high, pass out, and die fairly quickly. No pain or bother, and you don't leave any mess behind but your body (as opposed to most other methods which leave behind vomit, blood, general splatter, and an obviously injured body - makes things that much worse for your loved ones or whoever finds you).
Don't rule out the possibility of vomiting and aspirating, even with the 'good-quality' stuff.

And don't count on leaving a good-looking corpse, either.
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Old 09-08-2010, 11:58 AM
ChrisBooth12 ChrisBooth12 is offline
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Need answer fast? Ill reply back in a few hours.
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Old 09-08-2010, 12:02 PM
carnivorousplant carnivorousplant is offline
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Originally Posted by ChrisBooth12 View Post
Need answer fast? Ill reply back in a few hours.
Do I know you?



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  #13  
Old 09-08-2010, 12:54 PM
MikeF MikeF is offline
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I used to investigate drug induced deaths (there is a law that can hold the supplier of the drug responsible for the death, although were rarely charged anyone with it) and most seemed o have just gone to sleep. Forever. One guy died still standing up, leaning over with his lower arms and elbows on the sink. It was eerie/funny but it didn't appear there was much suffering.
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Old 09-08-2010, 02:21 PM
norinew norinew is offline
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As noted by shagnasty, heroin is related to morphine. I came very, very close to a morphine overdose once. Well, I guess I did get an overdose, I was just lucky enough not to die from it. So I can relate my personal experience:
I was in excruciating pain, and the attending surgeon kept saying "Give her more morphine". Finally, I managed to whisper "I can't breathe", and he said "Don't give her any more morphine!" and eventually the pain abated and I came out of it alive (duh. )
But seriously, even though I was still in serious pain, I don't think dying at that point would have caused me any additional pain. I'd had enough morphine that the not-breathing thing seemed worth mentioning, but not really all that important, you know? I mean, it just didn't seem all that relevant to what was going on at the time.

I would imagine that many people who die of heroin overdoses are experiencing emotional pain that's every bit as real and excruciating as my physical pain was. There was definitely a point in my own experience where any doctor could have said to me "I can give you more pain meds; it might make the pain go away, or it might kill you, 50/50 chance" and I'd have said "Do it!" When you reach that level of pain, anything that will make it stop, one way or another, is a good thing.
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Old 09-08-2010, 02:28 PM
Leaffan Leaffan is online now
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May I ask Norine, what could possibly have been THAT painful?
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  #16  
Old 09-08-2010, 05:10 PM
norinew norinew is offline
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Originally Posted by Leaffan View Post
May I ask Norine, what could possibly have been THAT painful?
Yeah, you can ask that. It was a kidney stone (aren't most of my 'pain stories' kidney stones??), and as soon as the urologist got a look at it on the CTScan, he could tell two things: One, the stone itself was infected (apparently, infected stones look 'fuzzy' or 'mossy' on a scan), two, it required surgery. The kind of surgery required is called a percutaneous nephrotomy, (perc for short), and involves general anesthesia, making a hole in the kidney through the back, then gradually dilating that hole until the hole is big enough to put a flexible wire in and retrieve the stone.

Apparently, while I was under, the stone caused a systemic infection (all through my blood system). I came out from the anesthesia, and had the expected pain from the incision, which is pretty bad for the first 24 hours. But then I had the blood infection, which caused the shivers that come with bad infections. The shivering was making the incision hurt worse, which was making me shake more, which was. . .lather, rinse, repeat. Five hours (I know because there was a clock in the recovery room) in hell. At least twice as bad as the worst kidney stone pain I've ever experienced. Horrible. Honestly, if anyone, during that time, had said to me, "If I push this button, it will stop the pain, but it will kill you", I probably would have told them to go ahead.

'Dreadful' doesn't even begin to come close.
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