MIAMI (CBSMiami) – A new deadly synthetic opioid, more powerful than fentanyl, is now showing up in Florida. The warning from state officials is "just one pill can kill."
It's called Isotonitazene, commonly referred to as ISO. It's being mixed with other drugs and appearing in the illicit drug market, possibly in powder or pill form. Often, users have no idea that a lethal synthetic opioid is mixed into a drug until it is too late.
Florida Attorney General Ashley Moody is sounding the alarm.
"For years, we have been warning about the dangers of fentanyl and how just one pill laced with this synthetic opioid can kill. Now, there is a new, deadlier drug being found in Florida. Isotonitazene, also known as ISO, is so strong that it can kill just by coming in contact with someone's skin or being accidentally inhaled. ISO has already been linked to overdose deaths in Florida, so please, never take any illicit drug and know that using just one time could cost you your life."
The Drug Enforcement Administration reports that, beginning in April 2019, ISO entered the illicit drug market nationally and is responsible for numerous deaths.
Like fentanyl, ISO can be laced with other drugs such as cocaine, methamphetamine, and even counterfeit pills. A 2021 American Society of Addiction Medicine report shows at least 40 fatal overdoses involving ISO during a six-month time period in 2020 in the counties of Cook County, Illinois and Milwaukee County, Wisconsin.
Testing by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement Crime Lab revealed that ISO has been found in multiple Florida counties since 2020, and law enforcement linked this deadly-synthetic opioid to two deaths in Pasco County, just north of Tampa, in 2021.
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