Warning over fake Adderall pills after deaths of two Ohio college students

Health officials have issued an urgent warning about the dangers of fake Adderall pills after two Ohio State University students died from an apparent fentanyl overdose.

Police were called to on-campus apartment on Wednesday night after a student reported her roommate and two friends had overdosed, The New York Times reported.

One student died in hospital that night and another died on Friday. A third was treated and discharged on Thursday, Ohio State President Kristina Johnson said in a statement.

“We are grieving and extend our deepest sympathies to the students’ family and friends,” said Dr Johnson.

The university would not be releasing any further details about the college students, she added.

On Thursday, Columbus Public Health warned that fake Adderall pills, which appear to contain fentanyl, were causing an increase in overdoses and hospitalisations.

Ohio State urged students attending graduation parties and end-of-year celebrations to be vigilant in a statement.

The warning read that the university “strongly discouraged” drug misuse, but should students choose to experiment they should pick up a Naloxone kit or fentanyl test strips from student health services.

“It is critical for everyone’s safety to be aware of the possibility of contaminated drugs in our community,” said Dr Johnson.

Columbus police say the students’ deaths were being investigated by the police division’s drug crimes bureau.

Adderall is commonly prescribed to treat attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Some students take the so-called “study drug” for increased concentration and all-night study sessions.

Counterfeit drugs that could be laced with fentanyl, a synthetic opioid 100 times more powerful than morphine, are circulating in the state, Columbus Public Health spokeswoman Kelli Newman told The Times.

Ms Newman said more than 90 percent of fatal overdoses in central Ohio were linked to street drugs containing fentanyl.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more than 106,000 Americans died from drug overdoses in the 12 months to November 2021.

Last month, Ryan Reavis was sentenced to more than 10 years in prison after he admitted supplying rapper Mac Miller with fentanyl-laced pills that caused him to suffer a fatal overdose in 2018.

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