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Updated: 4/11/2007 2:48 pm
Cocaine has been called the 'champagne' of drugs because it tends to be very expensive. It's also one of the most addictive drugs in existence. Cocaine produces a temporary increase in energy and a sense of euphoria followed by depression. It comes in powder, paste, or rock form, and can be snorted, injected, or smoked. Cocaine is derived from coca (KO-kuh) plant leaves, but can also be manufactured synthetically. There are a number of health risks associated with using cocaine, and about ten percent of casual users will go on to serious, heavy use. Regular users of cocaine are often restless, irritable, and anxious. They're also susceptible to attacks of paranoia, as well as hallucinations. Occasional use of the drug typically causes nasal congestion and a runny nose, while frequent use can result in nosebleeds, damage to nasal membranes, sore throats, and hoarseness. Chronic cocaine use can cause malnutrition, hallucinations, liver damage, heart failure, coma, and strokes. Although treatment for cocaine addiction can take several months or years, it's often extremely successful. For more information about cocaine, consult a health care professional in your area.

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