PEORIA, Ill. (WMBD) – The Jolt Harm Reduction Center is warning the public of certain street drugs being bought and sold in the South End of Peoria containing substances that are dangerous when mixed.
Earlier in the week, the center posted on it’s Facebook page explaining how “a drug being sold as heroin is testing positive for a dissociative substance called Methoxetamine (MXE).”
Chris Schaffner, program director of Jolt, said MXE is a hallucinogenic drug that is used in general aesthetics and is relatively harmless when taken in a controlled setting, but it can have dangerous effects when mixed with other substances and taken in great doses.
“When you don’t know you’re consuming it and it’s mixed with other drugs the risk potential increases significantly even to the point where you can lose memory,” Schaffner said. “Individuals who have used this particular substance have reported blocks of time where they’ve lost their memory and have had almost like a blackout.”
Schaffner said when you mix MXE with another drug you get the effects of both and depending on the setting those who consume it can have an experiencing ranging from “a dreamlike state to a terrifying bad trip experience of heightened, intense anxiety that can go on for several hours.
He said the center wants to push this information out as a public health service so those who use substances will be able to make safer choices.
“Abstinence will always be your safest choice but there’s a grey space between total abstinence and chaotic substance abuse,” Schaffner said. “Monitoring and managing your consumption is one of the ways we reduce harm surrounding drug use.”
Schaffner also said he wants the public to know the center does confidential and free testing of drugs and can provide results right away.