Bath Salts More Popular Than Ecstasy on the UK Club Scene

By Dirk Hanson 07/18/11

Mephedrone is proving to be an enduring new synthetic high.

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Designer speed for clubbin'.
Photo via drugsourcereview

Mephedrone, the near-beer amphetamine that is one of the designer drugs often sold under the category of bath salts, has become  Britain’s  most popular club drug, reports the UK Guardian. In a report just published online by the Journal of Substance Use, investigators found that mephedrone was more popular than both ecstasy and cocaine among the club crowd, even though the drug became illegal in Britain in April of 2010. Various forms of synthetic marijuana have also been marketed as bath salts. While side effects of mephedrone have sent some users to the emergency room, others feel differently: "The legal status wasn't considered important," said a researcher. "Among the people we spoke to, I was surprised how much they liked it, how much they enjoyed it. They wanted to take more and were prepared to seek it out and buy it on the illegal market." For more technical information on bath salts containing mephedrone, see this post at DrugMonkey Blog. And for more on the adverse effects of mephedrone, see this article in the New York Times.

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Dirk Hanson, MA, is a freelance science writer and the author of The Chemical Carousel: What Science Tells Us About Beating Addiction. He is also the author of The New Alchemists: Silicon Valley and the Microelectronics Revolution. He has worked as a business and science reporter for numerous magazines and trade publications including Wired, Scientific American, The Dana Foundation and more. He currently edits the Addiction Inbox blog. Email: [email protected]