Krokodil, the Drug That Eats Your Flesh: 5 Fast Facts You Need to Know [WARNING: GRAPHIC]

Published:12:53 pm EDT, September 26, 2013| Updated:4:53 pm EDT, February 21, 2014|
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KLTV, a local news agency from Phoenix, Arizona, is reporting the arrival of Krokodil on American soil. Krokodil is a popular Russian drug, made of codeine and an assortment of other chemicals, which are injected directly into the vein.

The problem? It's been known to rot flesh.

Here are five reasons you should NEVER try this terrible, new arrival to the American drug scene, even if you like drugs.


1. It Gets Its Name Because It Destroys Skin

Krokodil, crocodile in Russian, gets its name because of what it does to the skin. The drug makes skin green, scaly and tough like the skin of crocodiles. This change occurs around the site of injection, according to Business Insider.

Watch the report above from an international report on the effects of Krokodil and for more graphic photos of the effects of krokodil, look below:


2. It Rots Flesh From the Inside

The most disconcerting effect of the drug is its ability to rot flesh from the inside of a person's body. Krokodil, which is also known as desomorphine, is made by mixing codeine with all sorts of chemicals like gasoline, oil, alcohol, or paint thinner.

The combination of these chemicals often causes gangrene, making it necessary to amputate the affected regions. The acidic chemicals can also rot and eat at the flesh from the veins out, as seen in the picture above.

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3. Two Cases were Reported in Arizona

Krokodil is in the news this week because doctors in Arizona now believe the drug has made it to U.S. soil. According to KLTV, two patients were admitted to Banner's Poison Control Center showing signs consistent with the published accounts from Russian accounts of the drug's effects.

Dr. Frank LoVecchio of the center would not comment on the status of the patients, nor did he comment on whether the drug's popularity may be growing stateside.


4. A Krokodil Addict Has 'Two Years Maximum' to Live

krokodil

A Russian krokodil addict who has been ravaged by the drug.

An article published in 2011 in Russian publication Pravada explores the life expectancy of Russian krokodil addicts.

Heroin, the drug most often compared to krokodil, is considered much more healthy and much less addictive than the flesh-eating intoxicant. Pravada reports that 3 of 100 heroin addicts can be cured of their addiction, but krokodil kills all of its users:

A heroin addict may live up to six or seven years. The life of a desomorphine addict is much shorter- two years maximum. Some may take it for five years, but many people die after taking their first dose of this drug.


5. Russia May Have a Million Krokodil Users

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A poster posted in Kaliningrad offers help to the masses of alcoholics and drug addicts in the Russian city. (Getty)

Due to the fact the krokodile is cheap, cheaper than heroin, and some say a batch can be made in about 30 minutes, the popularity of the drug has skyrocketed in Russia since the early 2000s.

A story in Time from 2011 estimated that there were between, "a few hundred thousand and a million people," addicted to the substance in Russia alone. In 2009, Russian drug control services seized over 65 million doses of the drug.

Russia is estimated to have around 2.5 million drug addicts, most of whom use heroin.

For more graphic photos of the effects of krokodil, look here:

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