The drug became a drug of abuse in the 1960s when it appeared in pill form and in the 1970s when it came available in powdered form. A common practice was to sprinkle powdered PCP on marijuana joints and smoke it, but it can also be snorted or in pill form swallowed.
The onset of its sedative and anesthetic effects are rapid. Users report having a trance-like experience or a feeling of being "out of body" or detached from their environment. Users can experience shallow breathing, increased blood pressure and heart rate and elevated body temperature.
Unpredictable EffectsThe effects of PCP are unpredictable. In some users it can cause muscle contractions that can produce uncoordinated movements and bizarre postures. These contractions can become so extreme they can result in muscle breakdown or kidney damage.
Very high doses of PCP can cause convulsions, coma, hyperthermia, and death, according to National Institute on Drug Abuse research.
There are many other effects that dissociative drugs can cause, for more details, please see What Are the Effects of Dissociative Drugs?
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National Institute on Drug Abuse. "Hallucinogens and Dissociative Drugs." Research Report Series Updated January 2014
The Partnership at DrugFree.org. "PCP." Drug Guide. Accessed March 2014.