Posted on April 12, 2013 in prescription drug abuse
Rapper Lil Wayne was recently hospitalized in the intensive care unit after suffering from seizures apparently related to his abuse of “sizzurp,” otherwise referred to as “purple drank.” The events of the weekend have put the spotlight on the drink, which is particularly popular in hip-hop communities in the South, and has been implicated in the deaths of Pimp C, Dr. Screw and Big Moe, three prominent artists. This has sparked interest in the drug, and has left numerous readers wondering what “sizzurp” actually is and why people would use it.
Sizzurp – AKA Promethazine/Codeine
Sizzurp is a drink made from a cough syrup containing promethazine (a commonly used antihistamine) and codeine (a narcotic painkiller and cough suppressant), which is consumed in up to 16 times the recommended quantities to achieve a high. The prescription medication is mixed with fruit-flavored soda and dissolved Jolly Ranchers to form a cocktail. Codeine is chemically related to heroin, binding to the same receptors in the brain to produce euphoria. Promethazine is also used as a sedative, creating heightened euphoria when prescribed quantities are exceeded.