Angel powder, PCP or phencyclidine, a dangerous hallucinogenic drug

Angel powder, PCP or phencyclidine, a dangerous hallucinogenic drug

Phencyclidine or PCP (abbreviation in English of phencyclidine), is a dissociative drug that is used as an anesthetic and has hallucinogenic and neurotoxic effects. It is also popularly known as Angel Dust, Weed or Peace Pill.


  • 1 What is the PCP
  • 2 Effects of PCP consumption
  • 3 Adverse effects of PCP
  • 4 Dependence on PCP
  • 5 PCP abuse treatment

What is the PCP?

Phencyclidine (PCP) was developed in the 50s as an intravenous anesthetic, but due to its significant side effects with hallucinations, delirium and mania, its human medical use was discontinued after about ten years.

In its pure form, the PCP is a white crystalline powder that dissolves easily in water or alcohol and has a bitter chemical taste distinctive. When it is illegally marketed as a drug, it usually contains a large amount of contaminants that cause the color to vary from a light brown to a darker brown, with a pasty to lumpy consistency. It is available in a wide variety of tablets, capsules and colored powders, which are taken by mouth or inhalation. The liquid form of PCP is actually pheniclidine base usually dissolved in ether, a highly flammable solvent. For smoking, the PCP is usually sprayed on a material with leaves such as mint, parsley, oregano or marijuana. PCP can also be injected.

Pharmacologically, PCP is a non-competitive NMDA / glutamate receptor antagonist, but it also interacts with other receptors and may have effects with dopamine, opioid and nicotinic receptors.

This drug hinders the person's ability to think and communicate rationally and even to recognize reality, sometimes causing extravagant or dangerous behavior. Dissociative drugs such as PCP and ketamine They can make the user feel disconnected and out of control.

Effects of PCP consumption

Short term effects

  • Visual and auditory hallucinations.
  • Distortion of the sense of time.
  • Confusion.
  • Euphoria.
  • Reduction of pain sensitivity.
  • A blank look
  • Fast and involuntary eye movements.
  • Anxiety.
  • Feelings of super strength.
  • Feeling of invulnerability.
  • Slight increase in respiratory rate, which becomes superficial.
  • Increased blood pressure.
  • Increase of the pulsations.
  • Sweating
  • Apathy.
  • Amnesia.

Usually, hallucinations are accompanied by distortions in the sense of time and being of a person. In some cases, the feeling of being of a person can be destroyed. Naturally, confusion abounds and logic is not present. With the loss of oneself, the user can feel intense alienation, as if the world and the people in it had no meaning, and feelings of depression.

In some cases, people may have illusions that they are celebrities or dignitaries; and suddenly, they may feel overwhelmingly afraid of death.

Effects of low doses

A moderate amount of PCP generally causes users to feel distanced from their surroundings, as well as by general behavior as if they were drunk. There is limb numbness, difficulty speaking and loss of coordination They can be accompanied by a feeling of strength and invulnerability.

Effects of moderate doses

Moderate doses produce partial or complete anesthesia, where the person cannot move his limbs or any part of his body.

Effects of high doses

TO higher doses, there is a drop in blood pressure, pulse rate and breathing. This may be accompanied by nausea, vomiting, blurred vision, blinking up and down the eyes, drooling, loss of balance and dizziness. High doses of PCP can also cause seizures, coma and death (Although death is most often due to accidental injury or suicide during poisoning with this drug). Psychological effects at high doses include illusions and hallucinations.

Adverse effects of PCP

PCP, like the ketamine, can cause respiratory depression, abnormal heart rhythm and strong abstinence syndrome. When mixed with other central nervous system depressants such as alcohol or benzodiazepinesThe drug can cause severe respiratory depression, leading to coma and even death. However, since PCP reduces a person's ability to think rationally, other drugs are often ingested. PCP is also associated with a increased risk of suicide.

In some users it can cause acute anxiety and a feeling of imminent death; in others, paranoia and violent hostility, and in some, it can produce a indistinguishable psychosis from schizophrenia. Many believe that PCP is one of the most dangerous drugs of abuse.

PCP dependency

Continued abuse of PCP can lead to tolerance and addiction. As the person takes more and more medication to achieve the same effects, the risks of long-term damage increase. Apparently causes psychosis in people suffering from schizophrenia and also in chronic users.

PCP is addictive and its use often causes psychological dependence, with intense yearning for consumption and compulsive behavior in search of the drug.

PCP consumers report memory loss, speech and learning difficulties, depression and weight loss. These symptoms may persist up to one year after cessation of consumption.

PCP consumption among adolescents can interfere with growth-related hormones and normal development. Many PCP users are taken to emergency rooms due to unpleasant psychological effects or overdose. In a hospital or place of detention, these people often become violent or suicidal, and are very dangerous for themselves and others.

PCP abuse treatment

The effects of abuse and addiction to PCP are very varied; However, treatment is possible and users tend to respond to it.

The first step in the process will be the safe detoxification of the substance. Because the withdrawal can induce certain potentially dangerous symptoms, such as seizures, detoxification should be done under medical supervision. A rehabilitation center will provide a safe and supervised environment for this phase.

Once the detoxification phase is completed, addiction treatment therapy will begin, either in the same rehabilitation center or as part of an outpatient treatment program.

Treatment and aftercare will provide the skills and support the person will need to live a life of sobriety and prevent relapse.