The number of individual pills containing illicit fentanyl seized by law enforcement increased dramatically between January 2018 and December 2021, according to a study published in Drug and Alcohol Dependence. This research highlights growing, dangerous trend, particularly for people new to drug use.
Illicitly manufactured powder fentanyl has been a known adulterant in drugs since 2013, but the extent that fentanyl is found in counterfeit pills has been largely unknown. To address this question, a team led by Joseph J. Palamar, Ph.D., M.P.H., associate professor at the NYU Grossman School of Medicine and co-investigator on the NIDA-funded National Drug Early Warning System (NDEWS), analyzed data on drug seizures by law enforcement. The data were collected between January of 2018 and December of 2021 from the High Intensity Drug Trafficking Areas (HIDTA) program, a grant program aimed at reducing drug trafficking and misuse administered by the Office of National Drug Control Policy in which the Drug Enforcement Administration and the CDC play an active role.
See NIDA’s press release on this study for additional information.
Reference: JJ Palamar, et al. Trends in seizures of powders and pills containing illicit fentanyl in the United States, 2018 through 2021. Drug and Alcohol Dependence. DOI: 10.1016/j.drugalcdep.2022.109398 (2022).
|Year||Number of pills containing fentanyl seized by law enforcement|