Warning W-18 – A New Illegal Synthetic Street Drug Discovered

Morphine and fentanyl are opioid pain medications. Fentanyl, which is 50 – 100 times more potent than morphine, has been in headlines due to improper use, as well as being made and sold illegally. Now W-18, a new illegal synthetic street drug that was recently discovered in Kerrobert, SK, has been reported to be as much as 10,000 times more active (powerful) than morphine.

Drugs of this potency require extreme caution, both for the public and for health providers who may treat a patient suspected of W-18 use.  W-18 is believed to be so powerful that it poses a threat to someone who may simply handle or come in contact with it without wearing proper protection. Steps have been taken in Saskatchewan to notify physicians, emergency room staff, and other healthcare professionals about the dangers of coming into contact with this synthetic chemical.

W-18 is new and is not yet well known. There is a current lack of data about its toxicity and effects. W-18 was initially developed for its pain killing potential, however there are no published studies or case reports regarding legitimate uses for W-18.

Please be careful.  Do not engage with any illicit drug activity.

To access local support for mental health and addictions please call our intake team at 1-877-329-0005 or visit https://cypresshealth.ca/programs-services/mental-health-addiction-services/.   For more information on alcohol and drug use please visit https://www.saskatchewan.ca/residents/health/accessing-health-care-services/mental-health-and-addictions-support-services.