According to data from the National Plan on Drugs, 20 per cent of men who were involved in intervention programmes to reduce drug use and who were living with their partners at that time had carried out some form of assault on them during the year before starting treatment.

The scientific literature relates drug use to the appearance and consolidation of various mental disorders and, in particular, psychotic episodes with fundamental elements such as hallucinations and delusional persecutory ideas.

The social culture of drugs does not, however, conceal a general lack of knowledge about their long-term consequences as well as the adverse effects when the drug ceases to be effective. Like all narcotic substances, they work with a rebound effect when their effects wear off, causing an increased negative impact on the very problems they are intended to improve. Thus the increase in problems related to hostility, anxiety, insomnia and eating disorders is very common.

Drug use is behind many episodes of crime and violence because of its influence on the body. The increase in violence, mainly among young people, may be mainly due to the appearance of new substances with a much higher stimulant power and their addictive capacity.

Is the label Cannibal Drug deserved?

In recent years, the appearance of the so-called “Cannibal Drug” has been related to episodes of high impact violence which, due to their special virulence, have filled the pages of newspapers and news programmes, setting off alarm bells due to the striking nature of the events and the association of words so closely linked to the idea of terror as cannibal or zombie.

News with alarming elements such as violence, brutality, bites, drug consumption, aggressions, carried out by what the media catalogued as “predators”, filled the mind of a society accustomed to the sad “normality” of drug consumption.

Detected for the first time in the United States, an episode was reported in which a young man devoured the face of a beggar, being shot down by the police, and it took 6 shots to stop him in his “zombie” frenzy. The assailant’s autopsy revealed the consumption of a new designer drug known on the streets as “ivory wave” and which was sold as bath salts to evade police controls and be sold legally. Its boom due to the proliferation of information through social networks did the rest, already adopting other names such as MTV, magic, maddie, black rob, super coke, vanilla heaven, blessing, cannibalistic drug or white lightning.

Effects of methylenedioxypyrovalerone

Methylenedioxypyrovalerone, MDPV, had somewhat similar stimulant effects to cocaine, but with much greater and longer lasting power. With hallucinogenic effects, it could produce hallucinations, panic attacks and psychosis , in addition to numbing the mouth due to the effect of the lidocaine incorporated into the drug in its manufacture. It acts as an inhibitor of the reuptake of noradrenaline and dopamine, being also used as a nootropic agent for its stimulant effects on the nervous system.

MDPV presents similar effects to cocaine but with a 10 times higher potency as a psychostimulant, presenting negative effects as any narcotic substance based on tachycardia, insomnia, dizziness, dyspnea, hypertension, agitation, delirium, violent behaviour, pupil dilation, confusion, anxiety and suicidal behaviour, hypervigilance, excitement, excessive sociability, increased sexual desire, lack of inhibition and decreased need for food or rest.

On the other hand, an article published in 2017 in the British Journal of Pharmacology, referring to research on MDPV carried out by López-Arnau, Lujan, Duart-Castells, Pubill, Camarasa, Valverde and Escubedo, of the Neurobiology of Behaviour Research Group of the Health Sciences Behavioural Research Group at Pompeu and Fabra University, show that the use of this substance favours and multiplies the effects of any other narcotic substance in the future , especially cocaine.

Clandestine marketing of MDPV

The MDPV moves for its acquisition in the scope of the Deep Web, to which is added therefore its character of mysterious drug and not within reach of anyone , susceptible of multiple deceptions, selling other substances much more harmful in its place without warning the consumers of the danger in which they are involved.

In the year 2016 in Barcelona, the sale of some candy bears impregnated with a substance that was sold as MDPV in some cases and as Nexus in others was detected, being in fact another drug called 25N-NBOME or also “the bomb”, responsible for the death in the United States and Australia of several deaths caused by its consumption.

Multi-year aggressions

Stimulant drugs can undoubtedly induce in people predisposed to episodes of aggression or violence, but in the case of MDPV we cannot establish a pattern that leads us to associate it with cannibalistic behavior and much more, given the lack of rigor and adulteration in the substances observed in this illegal market.

Agencies such as the International Narcotics Control Board report that a history of previous mental health problems is behind 46% of the episodes of serious violence associated with drug use .

By way of conclusion we must mention the dangerous link that is established between drugs and entertainment, in which the aim is to push the human limits to the maximum of the vital risk where in many occasions the game ends up being lost.