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What can go wrong with cocaine?

What can go wrong with cocaine?

Users might feel happy, bright and alert after taking cocaine, but there are downsides. Users can feel paranoid and agitated, have hallucinations, take risks, ignore pain and display unpredictable or violent behaviour.

An overdose can cause seizures (fits), a stroke or a cardiac arrest, leading to coma and death. If you think someone has overdosed on cocaine, call triple zero (000) for an ambulance. Ambulance officers don’t have to call the police.

Find out about party drugs, including where to find help and support.

Can cocaine cause long-term problems?

People who use cocaine regularly can experience poor mental function and sexual performance, bronchitisanxietyhigh blood pressure, paranoia and seizures (fits).

They are at higher risk of stroke, heart disease and kidney failure, as well as infectious diseases, such HIVhepatitis B and hepatitis C, if they share needles.

Snorting cocaine can also damage the septum (middle part) of the nose, leading to collapse of the nose. Cocaine can harm your baby if you use it while you are pregnant.

Some long-term users may develop psychosis, which makes them paranoid, experience hallucinations or unusual thoughts and behave out of character. These effects usually disappear when the person stops using cocaine.

Long-term users risk social and financial problems, and use has been linked to criminal behaviour.