The health and social benefits of fentanyl testing were confirmed in a recent study. Most participants, on learning that they had tested positive for fentanyl despite not knowing that they had taken the drug, reported that they would subsequently warn other users about fentanyl while also taking more precautions when they use.
In a study published on January 2 in the American Journal of Drug and Alcohol Abuse, hairs taken from 40 individuals from an inpatient detoxification program who had reported heroin use within the past month were tested for fentanyl and its analogues.
The study primarily aimed to assess whether hair testing is a viable method for fentanyl detection to supplement the present method of urine testing. But it also sought to determine how participants might respond upon learning that their hair tested positive for fentanyl.
The findings further confirmed the pervasiveness of fentanyl in the US heroin supply. Out of the 40 participants, 39 tested positive for fentanyl. Yet 72 percent did not know that they had been exposed.
Among the key findings, “most participants (82.5 percent) reported they would warn others about fentanyl if they learned their hair tested positive; 75.0 percent reported they would try to stop using heroin, and 65.0 percent reported they would ensure that someone nearby has naloxone to reverse a potential overdose.”
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