Snorting Danger

New study shows that Hepatitis-C virus may be transmitted through the noses of drug users.

For someone who snorts their drugs, the main safety concern has been the drugs themselves, but it turns out there’s a new danger. For up to 20 percent of people contracting the Hepatitis-C virus, the method of transmission has been unknown, according to the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA). Now researchers believe that contaminated drug-sniffing implements may be the culprits for infecting a number of drug users.


The Infectious Research

The NIDA helped fund a trial that tested the hypothesis of nasal contraction of HCV. Investigators took samples of mucus and of straws used in typical drug use from 38 intranasal drug users with HCV infection. Blood was detected “in 74 percent of mucus samples and on eight percent of the straws used for sniffing. In addition, they detected HCV in 13 percent of mucus samples and on five percent of the straws. Only eight percent of the samples contained both HCV and trace amounts of blood.”

The results of the NIDA’s study helps to support the theory that HCV can be passed to those using sniffing implements during drug use with other people. Just one more reason to just say “no.”

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