Fentanyl is a synthetic opioid similar to morphine, but 50-100 times more potent.
Fentanyl is capable of causing respiratory arrest at smaller doses than heroin.
The high potency of fentanyl increases the risk of overdose.
The medication naloxone can prevent death from an opioid overdose if administered in time.
Fentanyl is addictive because of its potency and people who are addicted to fentanyl can experience withdrawal within hours after taking the drug.
Addiction is one of the most common side effects of fentanyl abuse. When someone uses fentanyl regularly, they will build a tolerance to it, and therefore they will need more of the drug to achieve a high.
If you suspect someone has overdosed, the first thing you should do is call 911. The treatment for a fentanyl overdose is a medicine called naloxone – a safe and effective remedy that can rapidly reverse opioid overdose. Naloxone is given by paramedics, emergency room doctors and other designated first responders.
Buprenorphine and methadone – opioid replacements designed to reduce drug cravings and can also be used to treat withdrawal symptoms.