Most experts measure the opioid crisis sweeping the country not by looking at addiction trends, but rather at overdose rates. Looking at deaths attributed to heroin addiction Portland, Oregon can blame much of the problem on other substances—namely opioid analogues such as fentanyl and carfentanil. These substances, exponentially more potent than heroin itself, have become increasingly common and have influenced overdose statistics as a result. In Oregon, where heroin ranks among the most commonly used substances, carfentanil overdose presents a particularly grave problem—much of which stems from carfentanil overdose in Portland specifically.
The Dangers of Carfentanil
Carfentanil overdose in Portland generally occurs when users attempt to procure heroin from untrustworthy sources. Dealers use synthetic opioids such as fentanyl and carfentanil to increase the potency of their product, often with reckless disregard for the effects. In 2016, the DEA issued a public warning about the dangers of ingesting carfentanil, an elephant tranquilizer not approved for human consumption. They noted that its potency is about 5,000 times greater than that of heroin.
To illustrate the dangers of carfentanil overdose, one need only consider the fact that 3 milligrams of fentanyl is generally considered a lethal dose. Fentanyl is approximately one hundred times less potent than carfentanil. While not all overdoses are lethal, the high potency of carfentanil greatly reduces the user’s chances of survival. In major cities such as Portland, the effects of this danger can be felt intensely.
Portland Overdose Rates
The state of Oregon already struggles with high rates of heroin overdose, but Multnomah County is a particularly problematic area. In 2016, Oregon suffered 131 heroin overdose deaths. According to the Oregon Health Authority’s opioid data dashboard, 69 of these (more than half) occurred in Multnomah alone. Regarding deaths due to heroin addiction Portland, Oregon may be the site at which much of the problem occurs.
When considering fentanyl, carfentanil and other analogues, the situation becomes even more troubling. At a glance, overdose death rates for this category were low in 2016, with 30 deaths in Oregon and only 9 in Multnomah County. The deaths for 2017, however, demonstrate how quickly the problem of fentanyl and carfentanil overdose is spreading.
Overdose rates for 2017 are still being counted, with data for the last two quarters as of yet incomplete. At the time of writing, medical examiners have already counted 59 such deaths in Oregon with 22 in Multnomah County. None of these 22 deaths are from fentanyl, increasing the likelihood that carfentanil overdose in Portland and the greater county area are responsible for this increase in numbers. Portland addicts in need of heroin addiction treatment must seek help before they run the risk of suffering their own regrettable encounter with carfentanil.
Heroin Addiction Portland, Oregon Treatment
Those who use heroin frequently often find it difficult to achieve sobriety due to excruciating detox symptoms that increase their cravings to use. Portland addicts in need of comprehensive care can begin their treatment by seeking out a facility such as Aspire Oregon. There, they can receive treatment for their withdrawal symptoms before entering the later and more intense stages of rehabilitation. By undergoing a full continuum of care, you can raise your chances of long-term success and the likelihood of suffering from carfentanil overdose as a result of continued heroin use.
For more information on carfentanil overdose in Portland or how addiction treatment can help, contact us today with any questions you may have. No matter how many may suffer from heroin addiction Portland, Oregon has at least one dedicated facility full of compassionate staff who are here to help.