Is "Bad Heroin" to Blame for Philip Seymour Hoffman's Death? - DC News FOX 5 DC WTTG

Is "Bad Heroin" to Blame for Philip Seymour Hoffman's Death?

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New York police are investigating a possible connection between the death of Philip Seymour Hoffman and so called, "Bad Heroin" in circulation on the East Coast.  The heroin, cut with the cheaper and more potent fentanyl is blamed for overdoses and deaths in Pennsylvania, Maryland and Rhode Island.

Hoffman reportedly had 50 glassine envelopes with heroin.  Some of the envelopes were marked with the logo "Ace of Spades."  That brand has been found in the past to be heroin cut with fentanyl.  At the Tarzana Treatment Center, four recovering heroin addicts helped me to understand what the pull of the drug is.  Johnny, who had been in rehab 15 times, said, his first time he tried heroin it was an immediate love. His problems melted away.  He told me, "I feel nothing. It's just the best ever.  You have no emotions; you don't need love, you don't need food, you don't need water.  You have heroin."   Darren explained the problem with heroin is it's always a crap shoot when you buy a bag.  It might be 100% pure and potent or cut with something that dilutes the potency.  Addicts might also mix heroin with other pain killers. 

Tarzana Treatment Center's clinical director Ken Bachrach said heroin slows the respiratory system; a user may literally forget to breathe. I asked, the four if the well-publicized deaths of Hoffman and the death of Glee star Cory Monteith in July influenced their decision to seek treatment.  Jessie thought about it and told me… July? I was strung out then, I wouldn't have heard or been affected by anything.

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