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Heroin

Brief Description

Heroin is an opioid drug that is synthesized from morphine, a naturally occurring substance extracted from the seed pod of the Asian opium poppy plant. Heroin usually appears as a white or brown powder or as a black sticky substance, known as “black tar heroin.” Learn more

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Statistics and Trends

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Monitoring the Future Study: Trends in Prevalence of Heroin for 8th Graders, 10th Graders, and 12th Graders; 2013 (in percent)*
Drug Time Period 8th Graders 10th Graders 12th Graders
Heroin Lifetime 1.00 1.00 1.00
Past Year 0.50 0.60 0.60
Past Month 0.30 0.30 0.30

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National Survey on Drug Use and Health: Trends in Prevalence of Heroin for Ages 12 or Older, Ages 12 to 17, Ages 18 to 25, and Ages 26 or Older; 2013 (in percent)*
Drug Time Period Ages 12 or Older Ages 12 to 17 Ages 18 to 25 Ages 26 or Older
Heroin Lifetime 1.8 0.2 1.8 2.0
Past Year 0.3 0.1 0.7 0.2
Past Month 0.1 0.1 0.3 0.1

Related Publications

Research Report: Heroin Cover

Heroin (Research Reports)

Published October 1997. Revised February 2014. Offers the latest scientific information on heroin use and its consequences as well as treatment options available for those struggling with heroin addiction.  En Español

Heroin (DrugFacts)

Revised April 2013. Offers basic facts about heroin, including how it is abused, its affect on the brain, other health effects, treatment options, and reported use by youth. En Español

Publication Cover

Opioids (Mind Over Matter)

Published January 1997. Revised September 2014. Describes how opioids, such as Vicodin, morphine, heroin, and codeine, affect the brain, the nervous system, and the limbic system, which controls emotions. En Español

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This page was last updated May 2014

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National Institute of Drug Abuse (2014). Heroin Retrieved from http://www.drugabuse.gov/drugs-abuse/heroin

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Research Report

Research Report Cover

Heroin

Offers the latest scientific information on heroin use and its consequences as well as treatment options available for those struggling with heroin addiction. 

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