Skip to main content

Table 2 Indicators of designer drug use

From: Designer drugs 2015: assessment and management

Body system Finding Medical indication Drug (s)
General Hyperthermia Intoxication Synthetic hallucinogens, bath salts
Head & neck Conjunctival injection Recent use Synthetic cannabinoids
Smoky chemical smell on breath Recent smoking Any smoked designer drug
Epistaxis Intranasal use Bath salts, synthetic hallucinogens
Nasal septal perforation Intranasal use Bath salts
Poor dentition Inadequate oral hygiene Bath salts
Jaw clenching, teeth grinding (bruxism) Intoxication Bath salts
Cardiac Tachycardia Recent use Any designer drug
Hypertension Recent use Any designer drug
Chest pain Cardiac ischemia, myocarditis Bath salts, synthetic cannabinoids
Renal Acute kidney injury Recent use Synthetic cannabinoids
Gastrointestinal Nausea, vomiting Recent use or withdrawal syndrome Synthetic cannabinoids
Enlarged and/or tender liver Acute hepatitis Any injected designer drug
Musculoskeletal Muscle spasms Intoxication Bath salts
Limb swelling and pain Rhabdomyolysis Bath salts, synthetic hallucinogens
Skin Diaphoresis Recent use Bath salts
Ecchymosis Recent use or intoxication Synthetic hallucinogens
Fresh needle marks, track marks Injection drug use Any injected designer drug
Neurologic Clonus Recent use Synthetic hallucinogens
Seizures Intoxication Bath salts, synthetic hallucinogens, synthetic cannabinoids
Psychiatric Agitation Recent use Any designer drug
Hallucinations Recent use Any designer drug
Psychosis Intoxication Any designer drug