Cocaine is derived from the leaves of the South American coca plant. Mainly in the Andes, the coca leaves are traditionally chewed or brewed to be drunk in an infusion (concentration of active agent 0.5 - 1%). The South American Indians have used coca for centuries to suppress hunger and tiredness and in order to be able to withstand greater physical exertion and lack of oxygen. When street cocaine is used, a considerably more potently stimulating effect is achieved than by the traditional chewing of the leaves.

Chemical name for cocaine is Benzoylmethylecgonine. It is a white, flaky, crystalline, odourless, bitter-tasting powder. The concentration of active agent in the powder sold as cocaine is highly variable (between 20 and 80%). Additives may be speed, caffeine, milk powder etc. Cocaine is also known as snow, coke, charlie, cheng, clam chowder, gack, toot, Vialli, showbiz sherbert.

Forms of administration: Cocaine is usually snorted, but may also be injected or absorbed through the oral mucous membranes, rubbed into the gums or placed under the tongue. More rarely it is drunk or swallowed. Freebase cocaine (crack/freebase) can also be smoked. See the leaflet on crack and freebase.


Effect and duration depend on the method of administration. If snorted, the drug takes effect after 2 - 3 minutes and lasts 30 - 90 minutes. If injected or smoked, the drug takes effect within seconds and lasts 5 - 20 minutes.

When the drug takes effect: warm feeling in the body, lips and gums feel furry/anaesthetised, feeling of dizziness is possible.

Other possible effects during the course of the "hit": increased alertness, euphoria, feeling of increased mental and physical performance and powers of concentration. Lucidity, greatly increased self-confidence, increased urge to be active, loss of inhibitions and anxiety, talkativeness, increased sociability, diminished powers of criticism and judgement. Coming down from the effects of cocaine is usually an unpleasant experience.

Short-term side effects

Increased blood pressure, body temperature and heart rate, dilated pupils, vascular constriction. Feelings of tiredness and hunger are suppressed. Reddening of the skin, altered perception, during sex, itching skin and visual disturbances may occur. Also possible (sometimes when coming down or in the event of an overdose) are feelings of uncertainty and anxiety, aggressive behaviour, restlessness, irritability, paranoia, delusions, cocaine hallucinations, depression, physical and mental exhaustion, collapse.

Overdose may lead to death due to respiratory paralysis.

Long-term side effects

Constriction of the blood vessels in the brain may lead in the long-term to impaired memory and concentration.

In the event of prolonged use of high doses, the following are possible: serious damage to the nasal mucous membranes and the nasal septum, damage to liver, heart, kidneys, lungs, skin, blood vessels, teeth and impotence. Increased irritability, sleeplessness and restlessness, confusion and exhaustion may also occur due to lack of sleep. When use of the drug stops, these effects usually abate.

Depression, anxiety, delusions, hallucinations and paranoid psychoses become more likely with long-term use. Your personality may alter as you may forget normal patterns of behaviour with frequent use. Using cocaine may become compulsive and irresistible, and may lead to psychological dependence.

Interaction with other drugs

Cocaine combined with nicotine leads to a vascular constriction - possibility of stroke!

Cocaine plus alcohol: underestimation of the effect of the alcohol, even if you are drunk, you feel sober - overestimation of your abilities and loss of control is possible.

Cocaine mixed with other stimulants (speed, caffeine or energy drinks in high quantities) may do a great deal of damage to the cardiovascular system and can lead to life-threatening conditions!

Safer use

People with cardiovascular problems should not use cocaine!

The same applies during pregnancy (deformities possible).

Only use cocaine when you have someone with you whom you trust.

You never know how high the actual concentration of effective agent in the cocaine you have bought is - take a low dose!

Always drink sufficient water/fruit juices rich in vitamins and ensure you get plenty of fresh air!

If you snort cocaine, take care of your nose! Whenever you use the drug, wash out your nose with 1 spoonful of sea salt to ¼ litre of water) and use a salve often. Chop the cocaine powder as small as you can as the larger the crystals the sharper they are and the more damage they do to the nasal mucous membranes.

Avoid frequently topping up your dose. Limit your dose and take breaks between use!

If cocaine increases your sex drive, ensure that you practice safe sex.

The ability to drive may be impaired. 

This information is intended to promote drug use! Cocaine is controlled under the BtMG (Dangerous Drugs Act). Possessing, buying and dealing in cocaine are punishable by law.



Diese Informationen sind keine Anleitung oder Motivierung zum Drogenkonsum! Kokain unterliegt dem Betäubungsmittelgesetz (BtMG). Besitz, Erwerb und Handel damit sind strafbar! Dieser Text wurde nach bestem Wissen und Gewissen verfasst. Dennoch können Irrtümer nicht ausgeschlossen werden. Die Drug Scouts übernehmen keine Haftung für Schäden, die durch irgendeine Art der Nutzung der Informationen dieses Textes entstehen.