Have Pseudophed restrictions worked?

Its been a few years since the states made it harder to by real Sudafed. Have these restrictions helped in cutting down on the amount of meth made in the US?

Yes, they have helped reduce production in the US. Now the stuff is mostly made in Mexico.

Great, outsourcing is everywhere :stuck_out_tongue:

The restrictions have been partially successful in returning antihistames that DON’T have freaking pseudoephedrine in them to the OTC drug racks. (I know that wasn’t the intended purpose of the legislation but it’s what’s important in life here, really).

There is as of yet no straight-up brompheniramine maleate in 200count pillbottles though, dammit.

As a very minor nitpick, “pseudophed” doesn’t exist – one major and heavily marketed brand name for pseudoephedrine is “Sudafed” – purposely misspelled to make it trademarkable.

What’s gonna happen, for the record: meth use will go down (I believe its already way past its peak), as all drug fads do…and then victory will be claimed. Remember how we stopped the sale of crack in the 1980s, by banning the OTC sale of cocaine?


Locally, we have had many fewer homes, trailers, hotel rooms, and car trunks blow up from being used as meth labs (yes, we had some idiots brewing meth in their car trunks). Since the residue left by that shit is effing toxic it has made things much safer for first responders and neighbors, even if it hasn’t reduced overall meth use.

Your mileage may vary.

Then there’s the shake-and-bake method, which is done in a 2-liter soda bottle and only requires a small quantity of pseudoephedrine pills.

About a year ago I was taking a technical writing course and had to pick a topic to write about, so I wrote our “war on drugs”. While doing my research, I found something kind of interesting.

As most people know, here in Oregon we had a big meth problem. Since Oregon has made products containing ephedrine and pseudoephedrine prescription only meth labs have really taken a hit, but, cocaine use is on the rise*.

*Miner, Colin. “Progress against methamphetamine boosts cocaine trade.” The Oregonian 26 June 2008 22 Jul 2008

For some reason, if you go to check the link, the whole thing won’t work…you’ll only get http://www.oregonlive.com/clackamascounty/

Well crap, now to view the article you have to be a member and pay to view the archive. But anyway, so that I can site what I said in the last post, the small amount of text shown backs up what I’m saying - site

It works for me; I can’t buy Sudafed at all, because here the pharmacies swipe your driver license when you buy it. Or at least I won’t be able to unless I go to the DMV for a replacement card. They aren’t that careful with my Schedule II controlled substance prescription, which, incidentally, is one with which concurrent use of pseudoephedrine isn’t recommended. For me, the net effect is nil.

You mean you can’t get 25mg diphenhydramine (Benadryl) capsules where you are? I thought those were ubiquitous. Sudafed isn’t an antihistamine, it’s a decongestant.

Of course it worked, it successfully moved the US Meth industry into the hands of an insanely brutal part-cult part-drug-cartel.

I can get diphenhydramine. I can get chlorpheniramine. I can’t find brompheniramine (former OTC brandname: Dimetane) anywhere though. The variant that had pseudoephedrine in it (OTC brandname: DimeTAPP) drove the straight-up antihistamine off the shelves.

What the laws drove off the shelves were the antihistamines (diphenhydramine, chlorphenarmine, etc.) combined with an effective decongestant (That Sudafed PE stuff can bite me!)

Now you have to show photo ID to buy the stuff.

Here in WV, you have to actually show photo ID to the pharmacist, who then proceeds to write you a 'script for pseudoephedrine, dispense it, and require you to sign the electronic signature-thingy™ before you can actually purchase it.

I’m very interested in the OP. I don’t mind going through all this BS to be able to be buy something that enables me to breathe through the night, if that BS actually serves a real purpose. But if it’s just so much political posturing (“we’re doing something, dammit!”) and costing me in terms of time and convenience, then I damn well do mind!

Plus (maybe some M.D. type Dopers can help me out here) I’ve heard that combo drugs, like Advil Cold and Flu (which features ibuprofen, plus an antihistamine, plus pseudoephedrine) cannot be used in meth manufacture. Is that true?

IAmNotSpartacus is correct, the rate of meth production in the USA has plunged way down. But the usage of meth has remained constant. The manufacture of it simply moved to Mexico and other countries that are less regulated.

You can no longer buy any medicines containing pseudoephedrine over the counter here in Mexico for several years now. For meth production it is being smuggled in in large quantities from India.

GOOD, I do not WANT a freaking decongestant in my antihistamine. If I do want a decongestant I’ll damn well buy it separately. And I don’t want pseudoephedrine within 30 yards of my medicine cabinet, I hate that stuff.
I’m well aware that the anti-crystalmeth laws are not reponsible for the original decline in straight unadulterated antihistamines; Sudafed was! The crystalmeth laws have made some progress towards putting things back the way they were before freaking Sudafed came along. But as I said, still no brom.

Part of the purported benefit of the restrictions on Sudafed sales was to reduce the amount of break-ins at pharmacies. They no longer can stock large quantities of it, so it makes break-ins pointless.

I wonder if there have been any studies to see if other production methods of meth have increased. I’m no expert (let’s be honest, it mostly comes from watching Breaking Bad,) but if that show is to believed, you can use methylamine instead of pseudoephedrine, albiet with a slightly different method. So are all the people who used to buy/steal pseudo now buying/stealing methylamine? I imagine it might be harder to get, cause it’s an industrial chemical, but if you can manage to get a barel of it, that would make a LOT of meth, cmpared to a couple pounds of decongestant.