A warning has been issued for a drug which is ‘increasingly’ being detected in overdoses and deaths across Scotland.

Public Health Scotland (PHS) issued a RADAR alert for the ‘new synthetic’ drug xylazine on Thursday, May 9.

According to the health firm, the drug is a non-opioid tranquillizer used in veterinary medicine as a sedative, muscle relaxant, and painkiller.

It also is known to reduce breathing, heart rate, and blood pressure.

PHS says people who take drugs may not be aware of the potential presence of xylazine in the supply.

The health firm says it is most likely to be consumed unintentionally and is commonly found as an adulterant in brown powders sold as heroin.

However, in the UK, it has also been detected in the wider drug supply including counterfeit opioid painkillers – codeine and tramadol – and in liquids sold as THC – a psychoactive component of cannabis – vapes.

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