The all new
CBS News App for Android® for iPad® for iPhone®
Fully redesigned. Featuring CBSN, 24/7 live news. Get the App

Getting High With Cold Medicine?

cold medicine
AP
People who want to get high from crystal meth need look no farther than their corner drug store. For years addicts have purchased cold medicines in order to extract key ingredients and turn them into meth.

CBS News correspondent Rick Sallinger from the Denver affiliate KCNC, reports the epidemic is growing: Methamphetamine is now America's No.1 illicit drug. A key ingredient in home cooked meth is pseudoephedrine. It's found in cold remedies.

A woman who does not wishes to disclose her identity is a former meth user. And she tells Sallinger she used to steal cold medicines off the shelf.

She explains, "When there's only stockers in the store and there's 17, 18, sometimes 20 some boxes on the shelf, you walk by and steal it and walk out of the store."

Now pharmaceutical companies are replacing that ingredient to prevent it from being used in making meth.

It's a move welcomed by law enforcement agencies, saying it's about time.

Tune in Friday morning for the complete report.