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First Death in the UK Reported by ‘Zombie Drug’ Xylazine.

The first death in the UK linked to the "zombie drug" xylazine has raised concerns nationwide. A 43-year-old man from Solihull, England, died from the effects of xylazine, heroin, fentanyl, and cocaine, according to a toxicology report. Xylazine is a powerful tranquilizer normally used by veterinarians on large animals, which recently made its way onto the country’s illicit drug market.

The "zombie drug," also known as xylazine, can make people extremely sedated and have hallucinatory effects. Due to its strong sedative effects and decreased coordination, it can cause a person to become physically unresponsive or "zombified." Xylazine also severely damages interior skin, leading to open sores. It has been labelled as "a really concerning drug" by UK specialists.  Users of drugs should be informed that although it is now legal in the UK, there is no appropriately safe dosage for anyone. The study looked for cases with xylazine detections in all drug-related deaths reported to the UK's National Programme on Substance Abuse Deaths (NPSAD) and discovered one. The Journal of Forensic and Legal Medicine has reported on the incident. The study added that "to the best of our knowledge, this is the first death associated with xylazine use reported in the UK, and even Europe, and indicates the entry of xylazine into the UK drug supply".

A 43-year-old man who had a history of using illegal drugs was killed. The post-mortem investigation revealed that none of his major organ systems had any natural diseases. But post-mortem toxicology found evidence of multiple medications, including eight in the blood and urine and three more in the pee.The man's death was concluded to have occurred from a combination of heroin, fentanyl, cocaine, and xylazine. 

The use of the ‘zombie drug’ by humans has been in the US since the early 2000s, which has significantly increased the number of deaths caused by it. Due to its overuse in Puerto Rico, xylazine is causing mayhem in communities all around the US. Philadelphia was named as the xylazine crisis' epicentre on May 24. According to Time magazine, there were at least 434 fatal xylazine overdoses in Philadelphia in 2021. The Biden administration identified xylazine-laced fentanyl as an "emerging threat" in April and asked Congress for $11 million (£9 million) to address the problem.

Xylazine is also referred to as "tranq" and is used to calm down horses and cows. However, it is overrunning the black market for drugs in the US, and dealers frequently mix it with heroin, fentanyl, and cocaine.The death of the 43-year-old man marks the entry of xylazine into the UK drug supply, and experts are calling for more research to find out how this drug ended up in the UK. 

Editor: Ms.Fahima Afrin

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