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I have concerns with a family members wound..can you put drugs into an open wound to get high?

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DocHobbins 14 Jan 2011

Dear jessicamarie
Certain drugs are absorbed into our systems in different ways. Some emergency Meds are formulated to absorb sub-lingually (under the tongue) as a fast onset of action is needed. Nitroglycerin for a heart condition is an example. Others reach the bloodstream via nasal inhalation. Sudafed and other anti-histamines are of this type. In terms of a crushed tab or capsule sprinkled into the open wound and then that drugs exerting its' effects depends on the depth and location of the laceration. How heavy it's bleeding and if it's bright , red , aortic, arterial blood OR purple, slow-flowing, thicker, venae cava, venous blood are factors. The latter more conducive to drug absorption.
Provided the Liver is not required to metabolize the Rx into its active form( thereby eliminating the need for first pass metabolism) a plethora of prescription meds , when placed in, on, or into an open wound will cause the Pt to feel the drugs effect.
As an anecdote from my days as a Paramedic; I've frequently treated opiate addicts for deep inner arm lacerations who, as they were lacking an i.v. syringe, opened a vein and sprinkled in the Heroin to achieve the desired effect!
To address your question, jessic amarie, As long as the wound was promptly cleaned and irrigated with water soon after the offending drug entered the open wound you're likely in the clear.
However: As I'm not there I'd encourage you to seek medical attention and call your local poison control board with ALL of the particulars as time may be of the essence!
Good luck and try to be more careful,
Dave Hobbins E.M.T-A.-P. (ret)

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