The Calvin Klein drug is not a new synthetic compound, but instead is a deadly combination of cocaine and ketamine. It’s one of the latest trending club drugs that is causing many overdoses for young adults that take these substances to party harder. Already leaving a trail of destruction in its path, this drug mixture tragically took the life of a young violinist who was a musical prodigy. The young violinist died from an accidental overdose of the drug in London on Thursday, July 11th, 2019.
What’s the story behind the name of this deadly drug cocktail? This substance is being called the ‘Calvin Klein’ drug because it goes by the initials ‘CK,’ that reference the brand. The appealing name of the drug, taken from a worldwide fashion brand, adds to its dangerous marketing appeal for young adults looking for an edgy high. The fact that it’s a combination of a stimulant and hallucinogenic causes adverse reactions that are leading to overdoses.
Calvin Klein Drug: Mix of Cocaine and Ketamine
When mixed together, cocaine and ketamine abuse can be life-threatening, causing increased heart rate, palpitations, and possible cardiac arrest. The death of a young musical prodigy because of taking the Calvin Klein club drug was covered by the New York Post, “Katya Tsukanova, 17, a leading musician in the UK, died of an apparent overdose from a cocaine and ketamine drug cocktail — just days after performing at the Royal Opera House in the city”. This news has prompted further investigation of how dangerous this drug is. Although more evidence is needed in how cocaine and ketamine combined affects a person’s brain, there is research on the two drugs separately.
The National Institute on Drug Abuse, NIDA, classifies ketamine as a dissociative drug similar to hallucinogens. NIDA states that the reason people take dissociative drugs is to “enable them to enter into what they perceive as a more enlightened sense of thinking or being” (NIDA). Additionally, from NIDA, “Ketamine—also known as K, Special K, or cat Valium—is a dissociative currently used as an anesthetic for humans as well as animals. Much of the ketamine sold on the street has been diverted from veterinary offices. Although it is manufactured as an injectable liquid, ketamine is generally evaporated to form a powder that is snorted or compressed into pills for illicit use…” (NIDA).
Is the new club drug called Calvin Klein dangerous?
Cocaine is considered a stimulant drug, and when added to ketamine, likely increases the effect of the Ketamine. Historically, cocaine has been mixed with many other drugs to enhance their effects. It is commonly mixed with heroin, methamphetamine, and alcohol. Tsukanova was a victim of the lethal effects of both drugs. The New York Post reported that her father, Igor Tsukanova, said his daughter was a “smart girl, and she made one bad choice.” (NY Post).
The CK drug is a popular club drug, and like other club drugs, may continue to take lives as it continues to be sold. The DEA currently does not acknowledge the drug cocktail CK as a specific drug type but does reference cocaine and ketamine in their drug schedules. The DEA classifies drugs according to how dangerous they are:
“Drugs, substances, and certain chemicals used to make drugs are classified into five (5) distinct categories or schedules depending upon the drug’s acceptable medical use and the drug’s abuse or dependency potential… the abuse rate is a determinate factor in the scheduling of the drug; for example, Schedule I drugs have a high potential for abuse and the potential to create severe psychological and physical dependence.” (DEA).
Currently, Cocaine is listed with the DEA as a schedule II drug and Ketamine a schedule III.
The fact that a young violinist died accidentally from the mixture of cocaine and ketamine is tragic. Although most experiences with dangerous drugs do not end well, cases like this are very saddening and force us to examine what our younger generations are doing when they get together. Becoming involved and educated about the types of drugs that are available in clubs and on the street is a starting point. Additionally, adults must look for warning signs and behaviors that indicate drug use and abuse, as well as supporting laws that will limit the accessibility of these drugs to be bought over the web and by illegal prescription as in the case of ketamine.
If you or a loved one are affected by addiction, Garden State Treatment Center is here to help. Our solution-focused addiction treatment programs get to the underlying causes of substance abuse. We provide personalized treatment plans that are tailored to the unique situation of each patient. Contact us around the clock for confidential help and don’t delay in reaching out.