Tainted Cocaine Scare Prompts Health Advisory

Thursday, December 18, 2008 at 14:39



A warning is going out about tainted cocaine in the province.


Saskatchewan’s chief medical officer says an antibiotic used to treat worm infestations in animals has been found in some quantities of the drug in Alberta and B.C.


Levasimole severely affects the immune system, causing even minor infections to become significant and potentially fatal.


At least 10 people in B.C. and another seven residents of Alberta have become ill after using levasimole-tainted cocaine.


Dr. Moira McKinnon believes it is likely the tainted cocaine is also present in Saskatchewan — although McKinnon notes there are no reported cases at this time.


Anyone who has used cocaine and recently experienced persistent chills, fever, skin infections, painful sores around the mouth or pneumonia is advised to seek immediate medical attention.