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The vocabulary of drug abusers.

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by J.P.C. Peper, Jul 12, 2012.

  1. J.P.C. Peper

    J.P.C. Peper Bronze Member

    Apr 8, 2012
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    Medical student (since 2009)
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    In several circumstances in medicine – e.g. when considering HIV or hepatitis C – it’s very useful to know about a patient’s potential history of drug abuse. However, sometimes they’ve already given you information without your knowing about it. The following may be helpful (with special thanks to the Oxford Handbook of Clinical Medicine).


    Amphetamines: Speed, whiz, Billy, pink champagne, crystal, methamphetamine (‘meth’ or ‘chalk’)

    Amyl nitrate: Goldrush, poppers, snappers

    Barbiturates: Barbs, idiot pills

    Cocaine: Coke, Charlie, uncle, the white, the nice, snow, rock, crack, nuggets, wash, gravel

    Dihydrocodeine: DFs

    Drug-induced sleep: Gauching, nodding, going on the nod

    Drug intoxication: Stoned, off it, bladdered, ripped, wiped out, off my box

    Heroin: Smack, the nasty, gear, brown, skag, hit, Harry, junk

    Ecstasy (MDMA): E, X, echo, disco biscuit, love drug, XTC, snow

    Heroin with ecstasy: Party pack (2-for-1 deal when pusher’s business is low)

    Filter: Bud/cigarette tip, for drawing drugs through before use

    GBL (gamma-butyrolactone): Nail varnish remover (deadly if used with alcohol)

    Injecting (subcutaneous, IM, subclavian): Mainlining, hitting/jacking up, cranking, having a dig (skin popping, muscle popping, pocket shot)

    Ketamine: Special K (Home Office class C drug, like cannabis); a K-hole is a dissociative state, may be a ketamine prelude to ‘ego death’

    LSD: Acid, trips, cardboard, tabs, microdots (2 mm tabs)

    Marijuana: Weed, pot, draw, ganja, grass, resin, Mary, hash, skunk

    Methadone: Mud, juice (implies liquid methadone)

    Methylenedioxyamphetamine: MDA, snowball (like MDMA but more psychedelic)

    Needles: Spikes, nails (tools means syringes)

    Obtaining drugs: Score (selling drugs is dealing)

    PCP: Angel dust, KJ, ozone, missle

    Physeptone ampoules: Amps

    Prostitution: Working the block/square, doing business, on the game, on the batter, flogging one’s golly

    Prostitute’s client: Mush, punter

    Shoplifting: Grafting

    Smoking heroin: Chasing the dragon (bonging means smoking cocaine)

    Syringes: Works, tools (gun is the barrel of a syringe)

    Temazepam: Temazies

    Tourniquet: Key

    Wanted by police: ‘On me toes’, keeping head down

    White heroin: China white

    Withdrawing from opiates: Turkeying, clucking

    Zopiclone: Zim-zims


    ’Oxford Handbook of Clinical Medicine’ (8th edition).

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    Last edited: Jul 12, 2012

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