Cocaine (or crack in its impure freebase form) is a crystalline tropane
alkaloid that is obtained from the leaves of the coca plant. It is a
stimulant of the central nervous system and an appetite suppressant, giving
rise to what has been described as a euphoric sense of happiness and
increased energy, and post production. It is most often used recreationally
for this effect. Nonetheless, cocaine is formally used in medicine as a
topical anesthetic, specifically in eye, throat, and nose surgery.
There is controversy among treatment professionals over whether cocaine is
only psychologically or also physically addictive.
Its possession, cultivation, and distribution are illegal for non-medicinal
and non-government sanctioned purposes in virtually all parts of the world.
The name comes from the name of the coca plant in addition to the alkaloid
suffix -ine, forming Cocaine.
The stimulating qualities of the coca leaf were known to the ancient peoples
of Peru and other pre-Columbian Andean societies. In modern Western
countries, cocaine has been a feature of the counterculture for over a
century. There is a long list of prominent intellectuals, artists, and
musicians who have used the drug — ranging from Sir Arthur Conan Doyle and
Sigmund Freud to U.S. president Ulysses S. Grant. Cocaine could be found in
trace amounts in the Coca-Cola beverage for several decades after the
beverage's release, though that is no longer the case.
Today, although its free commercialization is illegal and has been severely
penalized in virtually all countries, its use worldwide remains widespread
in many social, cultural, and personal settings.
The chemical cocaine
hydrochloride is commonly known as cocaine. Some users chemically process
cocaine in order to remove the hydrochloride. This process is called
"freebasing" and makes the drug more potent. "Crack" is a solid form of
freebased cocaine. It is called "crack" because it snaps and cracks when
heated and smoked
Heroin is an illegal, highly
addictive drug. It is both the most abused and the most rapidly acting of
the opiates.Heroin is typically sold as a
white or brownish powder or as the black sticky substance known on the
streets as "black tar heroin." Although purer heroin is becoming more
common, most street heroin is "cut" with other drugs or with substances
such as sugar, starch, powdered milk or quinine. Street heroin can also be
cut with strychnine or other poisons