“People don’t realize how quickly these drugs can become addictive and they don’t always know what they’re getting. When something is obtained on the Internet, often it’s synthetic. With “legal highs” one could be a stimulant and another could have a hallucinogenic effect.”
~Kristin Rothert, Head of Clinical Standards and Quality, the Bridge Project
In August 2014, a University of California San Diego student collapsed in his dormitory room and died of an accidental drug overdose. Toxicology reports revealed the presence of 5-APB, better known as “benzo fury” – yet another synthetic drug that has found its way to Southern California.
Like other synthetic or so-called “designer” drugs, benzo fury is marketed as a legal high that can be easily purchased over the Internet. But as is the case with other dubiously-legal synthetic drugs, the makers of benzo fury frequently tweak the formula in order to stay one step ahead of any bans put in place by lawmakers.
This means that abusers of benzo fury experience the same risks as with other drugs – dependency, addiction, overdose, etc. – while also putting themselves in danger when they ingest a substance that is completely unregulated in terms of safety, ingredients, or its effects on the human body.
What Is Benzo Fury?
Benzo fury is a less-potent derivative of MDA, an amphetamine-like recreational stimulant and psychedelic known as the “love drug”. As with MDA, benzo fury’s affects are unpredictable and can vary dangerously from person to person, especially when taken in conjunction with alcohol or other drugs.
The risk of addiction is very real. Professor Jolanta Opacka-Juffry of Britain’s University of Roehampton says, “Pure hallucinogens are not addictive as such because they do not cause an increase in dopamine release, unlike amphetamine or cocaine. But benzo fury with its mixed properties is a trap, as its repetitive use for the hallucinogenic effects could lead to dependence…It’s in the combination of the stimulant and hallucinogenic properties that the greatest danger lies.”
If you or someone you care about is abusing benzo fury or any other synthetic drug, contact Lasting Recovery—San Diego’s outpatient drug and alcohol rehabilitation program. Get the support you need with Lasting Recovery’s evidence-based and wellness-focused treatment strategy.