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Heart attack chemical linked with cocaine

Thursday, December 31st, 2009 Heart attack chemical linked with cocaine

A new study has found that almost 50 per cent of cocaine users are testing positive for a heart-attack inducing chemical, which is caused by mixing alcohol and drugs.

Cocaethylene is a potentially fatal chemical that is formed in the liver when alcohol and cocaine are combined. It is thought to be responsible for a rise in heart attacks among under-40s.

The research which examined the hair strands of 1,728 volunteers from around the country revealed that the chemical was present in 45 per cent of users.

Avi Lasarow, from Trimega Laboratories, who carried out the research, said that examining a persons hair gave “very accurate readings of when and how much cocaine or alcohol has been consumed, and the levels of cocaethylene being formed in the body”,

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