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Krokodil Skin


The drug Krokodil is a semi-synthetic opioid also known as desomorphine.

Krokodil is a harmful and addictive drug used as an alternative to heroin, another kind of illicit opioid. Krokodil was first introduced in Russia and Eastern Europe, and reports of crocodile-like skin in users solidified the Russian term for crocodile (Krokodil) as its name. Today, as the opioid epidemic persists, this drug has made its way to the United States and has become a common alternative to heroin. Our Christian drug rehab is sharing more about “Krokodil skin” and why it happens.


What Does Krokodil Do?

Krokodil got its name from a step in the cooking process where codeine turns into a chemical called a-Chlorocodide and because of the greenish-black skin that it causes in users. Krokodil eats your skin because of the different chemicals it contains, such as over-the-counter drugs, codeine, and other harmful chemicals like paint thinner and iodine, as well as poor injecting practices. From gangrene to skin necrosis (skin death), Krokodil’s effects on the skin are severe and noticeable. Krokodil addicts who do not receive medically monitored detox or treatment are more likely to suffer from the long-term effects of Krokodil, including limb amputation. Faith in Recovery provides detox among a whole variety of addiction recovery sources that can assist in the recovery process from Krokodil addiction.


Crocodile Drug Skin Effects

Using dirty or used needles to inject Krokodil increases the likelihood of contracting skin diseases and skin infections. Poor injection practices can also poison skin and cause collapsed veins. Additionally, the toxic chemicals used to make Krokodil also contribute to its horrible impact on the skin.

Some common Krokodil drug effects on the skin include:

  • Thrombophlebitis (blood vessel damage)
  • Open Ulcers
  • Gangrene
  • Skin and soft tissue infections
  • Limb amputations
  • Meningitis
  • Blood poisoning (bacteremia)
  • Rotting gums
  • Tooth loss and decay
  • Bone infections such as osteomyelitis and osteonecrosis

The effects of “Krokodil the skin drug” aren’t limited to the skin. This drug, more potent and faster-acting than heroin, can also cause memory and or motor skills impairment, liver damage, kidney damage, and respiratory issues. As an opioid, desomorphine works to sedate the central nervous system, alleviating pain and activating dopamine. As a result, users often experience a sedative, calming, and pleasurable high. Despite the noticeable and life-threatening Krokodil skin damage that can occur, even with only a few uses, a person who’s psychologically and physically dependent on it will struggle to quit without help.



Our Christian drug rehab understands that recovery from addiction requires treatment options for both physical and psychological recovery. Many make the mistake of assuming that addiction is based on decisions, but it’s a disease in which long-term treatment and commitment are necessary for preventing relapse. If you or someone you know is struggling with an addiction to Krokodil or any other drug, call us now at 888-280-4763 to learn more about our faith-based recovery programs for addiction.