Krokodil Addiction and Abuse

Krokodil Addiction and Abuse

Krokodil, or desomorphine, is a street opioid that is somewhat common in Russia. It’s relatively easy to make and has some terrifying side effects on the human brain and body. Drug manufacturers use codeine, iodine, red phosphorus, and other unsavory chemicals to make Krokodil. It saw massive amounts of growth in users up until 2012, when codeine was regulated by the government.

Krokodil gets its name from its effects on the body. It causes users’ skin to harden and become scale-like, making long-term users resemble a crocodile. Some studies suggest it comes from one of the chemicals used in its creation, chlorocodide.

Krokodil might be the most sinister street drug ever created. Due to a heroin shortage in the northern areas of Russia, Krokodil was created by local drug dealers to make up for the shortage of opiates. As previously mentioned, homemade Krokodil contains iodine and red phosphorus, among other chemicals. If someone doesn’t go through the effort to remove the byproducts of synthesis, the drug can literally eat away at the body.

Krokodil Destroys your Body From the Inside

Krokodil makes the blood vessels burst, and tissues die at the injection point. Over time, it kills the skin and makes it look reptilian. The skin and tissues often fall off in chunks, sometimes exposing the bone to the air.

Some have called it the zombie drug. Time magazine reported that users die, on average, within three years of exposure.

Symptoms of Krofodil

If you know someone who is using this insidious drug, you need to make sure they get help immediately. But how do you know someone is using desomorphine? There are some signs you can look for. Even though it’s a rare drug, that doesn’t mean there aren’t people using it. Symptoms of krokodil use are:

  • Gangrene
  • Skin and tissue infections
  • Blood poisoning
  • HIV
  • Speech impairment
  • Memory loss
  • Liver and/or kidney damage
  • Open ulcers
  • Pneumonia
  • Rotting gums and/or tooth loss
  • Bone infections
  • Motor skills impairment
  • Impaired concentration

Krokodil Treatment and Rehab

As with many drugs, the signs and symptoms of addiction include:

  • Withdrawal from friends or family
  • Changes to personality and appearance
  • Financial troubles
  • Problems with the law
  • Struggling to get or maintain a job
  • Issues with relationships
  • Weight gain or loss
  • Changes in sleep patterns

In the case of Krokodil, there will also likely be sores or patches of skin that appear to be dying. If you know someone who is experiencing these symptoms, it’s important that they seek treatment to stop using this substance. You might want to try and find a rehab center specializing in treating opioid addictions.

Krokodil addiction isn’t your average addiction. Due to the nature of this substance, the time you have to get a loved one help is not the same as it might be with other types of addictions. If you know someone who has an addiction, they will likely need specialized help.

Rehab Treatment Process

  • Step 1 – Intake: When you arrive at your facility, you will be assessed by the medical professionals to determine your treatment through detox, as well as your rehabilitation program.
  • Step 2 – Detox: After your assessment or intake, you will be taken to your room, where you can rest and be monitored while you withdraw your drug use. Detox can range from 1 day to a week, depending on the drug of choice and the user.
  • Step 3- Rehab: After you finish detox, you will be ready to begin your addiction treatment, which can range from various options. This is when you can meet others, attend lectures, participate in group or individual counseling, and learn the tools you need to stay clean.
  • Step 4- Aftercare: When your time at the facility is over, you will have to return to your life. This can be challenging for many people, but part of your treatment includes aftercare. This is usually outpatient counseling in a group or individualized setting, where you are slowly introduced back to your life and responsibilities

Take The First Step Towards Recovery

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Addressing Krokodil Addiction

Helping a Friend or Family Member Face Their Krokodil Addiction

If you are worried someone you know is addicted to Krokodil. You could be the one that saves them from their downfall. You have the potential to save someone’s life, so it’s important to do the right thing. Maybe you just want to individually talk to your loved ones and let them know how their Krokodil addiction has affected your life. Or maybe you want to hold a full-fledged intervention with friends and family.

An intervention can be a wonderful process to get your loved one off the drug that is plaguing their life. If you want to hold an intervention, make sure to discuss the consequences of drug addiction for them and those they care about. How does it affect you and your loved ones? How has it affected your loved one that you want to help? You will share destructive behaviors and consequences. The goal is to have your friend or family member accept that help is okay to ask for and that you and the rest of their loved ones are right there to help.


  • Let them know you are aware of their problem
  • Let them know that you care and want to help
  • Tell them that there are treatment options for them
  • Tell them that you love them and will be there


  • Bring this up when they are under the influence
  • Make them feel like they are failures
  • Let them convince you they don’t need treatments
  • Bring up too many hurtful reminders of their addiction at once

The Bottom Line: You Can Beat Krokodil Addiction

If you’ve reached this point, it is hard to deny the fact that you’re serious about beating your Krokodil addiction, and that is something to have pride in. Your life matters, and there is no reason why you should allow a drug to dictate the rest of your life when help is available. Remember, choosing to go into a Krokodil rehab treatment center will help you rid yourself of the horrible effects you’ve had to endure, extend your life span, and, most important, place you on track towards regaining your life. So don’t fight addiction alone. Instead, allow us to help you live the life you deserve to have.

Payment Options for Krokodil Abuse Treatment

If you want to kick your Krokodil addiction – but you’re worried about the cost, you’re not alone, but you shouldn’t let this be why you don’t get the treatment you deserve. Many people have insurance that will cover much of the cost of attending rehab.

In fact, many medical insurance providers can pay for some of your treatment costs since substance use disorder use is a medically recognized disorder. We can help you understand your insurance and see how much your rehab your benefits will cover. We want to help you make the rehab process as smooth and easy as possible.

Medical disclaimer:

Sunshine Behavioral Health strives to help people who are facing substance abuse, addiction, mental health disorders, or a combination of these conditions. It does this by providing compassionate care and evidence-based content that addresses health, treatment, and recovery.

Licensed medical professionals review material we publish on our site. The material is not a substitute for qualified medical diagnoses, treatment, or advice. It should not be used to replace the suggestions of your personal physician or other health care professionals.

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