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NCJ Number: 194881 Find in a Library
Title: Gamma Hydroxybutyrate (GHB) Fact Sheet
Author(s): Jennifer Lloyd
Corporate Author: Drug Policy Information Clearinghouse
United States of America
Date Published: November 2002
Page Count: 4
Sponsoring Agency: Drug Policy Information Clearinghouse
Rockville, MD 20849
NCJRS Photocopy Services
Rockville, MD 20849-6000
Office of National Drug Control Policy
Washington, DC 20500
Sale Source: NCJRS Photocopy Services
Box 6000
Rockville, MD 20849-6000
United States of America

Drug Policy Information Clearinghouse
P.O. Box 6000
Rockville, MD 20849
United States of America
Document: PDF
Type: Factsheet
Format: Document
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This document discusses the central nervous system depressant gamma hydroxybutyrate (GHB).
Abstract: GHB was sold in health food stores as a performance-enhancing additive in bodybuilding formulas until it was banned in 1990. It is produced in clandestine laboratories with no guarantee of quality or purity, making its effects less predictable and more difficult to diagnose. GHB can be manufactured with inexpensive ingredients and using recipes on the Internet. It is usually taken orally and is sold as a light-colored powder that easily dissolves in liquids or as a pure liquid packaged in vials or small bottles. It is clear, odorless, tasteless, and almost undetectable when mixed in a drink. The average dose (1 to 5 grams) takes effect in 15 to 30 minutes, depending on the dosage and purity of drug. Its effects last from 3 to 6 hours. GHB consumption can produce loss of muscle tone, reduced inhibitions, a strong feeling of relaxation, and reduced heart rate and respiration. It interferes with blood circulation, motor coordination, balance, and motor and speech control. When mixed with alcohol, GHB can lead to respiratory depression, unconsciousness, coma, and overdose. GHB can become addictive with sustained use and withdrawal symptoms include anxiety, tremors, delirium, and agitation. In 2001, estimates of annual GHB use ranged from 1 percent among 10th graders to 1.1 percent among 8th graders and 1.6 percent among 12th graders. GHB has surpassed Rohypnol (flunitrazepam) as the most common substance used in drug-facilitated sexual assaults. Congress passed the Drug-Induced Rape Prevention and Punishment Act of 1996 to combat drug-facilitated crimes of violence, including sexual assaults. The act imposes harsh penalties for distribution of a controlled substance to an individual without the individual’s knowledge and consent with intent to commit a crime of violence, including rape.
Main Term(s): Acquaintance rape; Controlled Substances
Index Term(s): Drug abuse; Drug purchases; Drug purity; Drug testing; Drugs and Crime Data Center and Clearinghouse; Hallucinogens; Rape; Sexual assault
Note: ONDCP Drug Policy Information Clearinghouse Fact Sheet
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