It is the most ancient drug on the planet – Opium. We will tell you opium story, and its modern application.
Opium (opium, hank, shirk, poppy straw, omnopon, raw opium, pantopone, extraction opium) is a potent drug derived from sun-dried milky juice extracted from unripe opium poppy capsules (Papaver somniferum). In traditional medicine, due to the high content of morphine alkaloids, it was used as a strong painkiller. However, it quickly caused drug addiction and is now only used as a raw material for the production of safer analgesics.
Opium serves as raw material for the production of other, more powerful drugs – codeine, morphine, heroin (opiates).
In the USSR, opium tincture (a gastric drug) was withdrawn from production in 1952. Currently, only medicines based on purified alkaloids of poppy, and also their semisynthetic derivatives are produced. Their leave is limited by legislation regarding the turnover of narcotic drugs.
Currently, the main areas of opium poppy cultivation are concentrated in the so-called. “Golden Triangle” (Northern Thailand, Laos, Burma), as well as in Afghanistan.
According to the annual report of the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, the area of opium poppy cultivation in Afghanistan now exceeds coca plantations in Colombia, Peru and Bolivia combined and amounts to 193,000 ha. According to experts’ forecasts, the harvest of opium poppy in 2007 will increase to 8200 tons – this is 2.4 times more than in 2002, when coalition forces launched military operations against the Taliban army. At the same time, according to the UN, in the northern part of the country, under the control of the pro-American government, poppy crops are shrinking, and the harvest of grain is growing. In the southern regions of Afghanistan, where the Taliban’s positions are strong, an opposite situation develops.
Acetylated opium (extraction opium, chernyag) – the means of handicraft production containing up to 12% of heroin which is widespread in Russia and other East European countries where there is a wild-growing poppy.
Acetylated opium – the brown solution similar to more or less strong brewing tea, with distinct, sometimes a pungent smell of vinegar. When is defended, becomes lighter and is more transparent, leaves a sediment in the form of small dark particles. It is also the “black solution” having ill fame or “black” (called sometimes also by Khanka, “chemistry”, “anhydride” – from the anhydride of acetic acid added in the course of “cooking”).
Acetylated opium – one of the most widespread drugs in Kiev. According to the representative of TsOS of capital militia Natalia Storozhik, such type of drug rather cheap. It is easy to cook it and therefore he is so popular, reports.
Shadow property of this miracle sedative is the pronounced addiction to him turning into insuperable accustoming. Smoking of opium has accepted mass character in China especially after at the beginning of the XVII century the last emperor of the Mongolian (yuansky) dynasty Min has forbidden the citizens tobacco smoking. Addiction to smoking of opium has led to the fact that in 1729 the emperor Chen Jung tried to limit cultivation of opium in the country and his smoking which though hasn’t stopped, but to some extent became secret.
Cases of overdose of celebrated personalities which came to an end took place it is very deplorable. According to the legend, in 1037 the famous Arab doctor Avicenna (Ibn-Xing) has died from it. Having got sick with dysentery, he ordered to prepare for the pupil medicine in which that has by mistake brought too high dose of opium. Explain with a case of overdose of medicine also Voltaire’s death. So, in one of the Parisian newspapers in June, 1778 there was the following funny message: “At last the old philosopher and the writer mister Voltaire on Saturday at 11 o’clock in the morning has died as a result of the rashness, having accepted too high dose of opium at once”.