'Krokodil' Trend Of Flesh-Rotting Drugs Hits UK (GRAPHIC PICTURES)

Krokodil has already hit headlines for being "the most horrible drug in the world."

Branded "cannibal heroin" for literally rotting users from the inside out, it costs £5 a hit on the street and contains a toxic mix of codeine, gasoline, paint thinner, industrial cleaning oil, and alcohol.

It is a drug for the poor, and its results are catastrophic.

The poisonous drug rots away a user's skin

A user's muscles, tendons and bones can become exposed as the drug eats away at the flesh, while the poisonous concoction causes abscesses and gangrene on the skin – making it look as scaly as that of crocodiles and earning it its name.

Worryingly, it also appears to be spreading, with reports recently emerging that it had left its country of origin, Russia, for the US.

Now, experts have warned of a "shift" in the UK that has seen heroin use decline, while another drug widely available in Britain is being cut with substances that have the same "skin-melting" effect as krokodil.

Krokodil may not have widely infected the UK yet, but Dr Allan Harris, a specialist in treating drug addicts and the homeless, has said that "there are plenty of warning signs" that it could soon reach our shores.

"I've already treated one case and I'm sure that in the coming years I will see more," he warned, speaking to the Huffington Post UK.


Krokodil (Desomorphine) was first developed as a painkiller in The United States in the 1930’s

The horrifying effects of krokodil

He claims to have treated one man suffering the tell-tale signs of krokodil use, stating the patient's tissue destruction was "vastly disproportionate," to the wounds caused by injecting heroin.

"He had a huge crater in his arm, where you could actually see the tendons and bone moving at the base. He was never able to use his right arm again – the muscles never grew back because they were completely gangrenous. He died this year."

An equally disturbing trend has also escalated, with the "krokodilizing" of the designer drug mephedrone to make it intravenous, leaving users with similarly horrific open wounds and severe skin necrosis.

Mephedrone, also know as meow meow, mcat and white magic, was a so-called legal high until 2010 when it was made a Class B drug.

It was popular among young people and internet-savvy experimenters as a cheap alternative to cocaine and ecstasy, easily bought online legally and for a fraction of the price of its illegal alternatives.

The powerful stimulant, a white powder, was typically sniffed by users, but after a spate of alleged deaths it disappeared into obscurity.

Now, it has been reincarnated as an injected drug to rival crack and heroin, with experts warning its use is parallel to the deadly krokodil.

Danny Morris, an independent consultant specialising in harm reduction approaches for drug users, warned the use of the drug is an "increasing problem."

"We have seen a shift in pattern that means there has been a decline in heroin use and a massive increase in the injection of mephedrone," he told HuffPost UK.

"Injecting meph can be a euphoric drug experience but it certainly comes with some very unpleasant aspects to it."

One user, described the feeling as "amazing – a hundred times better than any other drug."

"After my first hit, I start fitting and shaking uncontrollably. I get very frightened but as soon as get get any control I want to inject more."

"You’ve got to make sure your in the vein before you bang it in. Don’t even bother in small veins."

"I’m aware I’m not all right but it’s the most incredible feeling – you don’t feel any pain."

Police have warned mephedrone is being mixed with petrol and the toxic combination, unsurprisingly, reacts to skin, creating abscesses as it effectively burns flesh.

Dr Harris, along with police officials, have branded the trend "krodilising" for having the same fixing process and level of addictiveness.

Many users inject mephedrone up to 15 times a day because of its short high, in comparison to heroin where users shoot up once or twice a day, making it far more addictive, he said.

"It is the worst drug possible to be addicted to," he said.

"The trend is similar because of the highly addictive nature of the opiate and the terrible skin destroying effects of the carrier," he said.

"People will inject anything they can fix up, and, out of pure desperation, users are very adapt making these deadly concoctions up."

"Things like this are cheap and easy to make out of readily available ingredients and because of this there is the potential krokodil could spread to the UK."

The drugs charity Release said: "The emergence of injecting mephedrone use poses difficult questions about the efficacy of a policy that addresses drug use through ‘banning’ the drug rather than tackling the underlying issues faced by people that use drugs problematically."