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    Flakka is the street name for a synthetic cathinone named alpha-pyrrolidinopentiophenone (Alpha-PVP). It is chemically similar to other synthetic drugs known as “Bath Salts.” These synthetics mimic cathinone, an amphetamine-like stimulant found naturally in the khat plant.[1]

    Flakka comes in the form of white or pink crystals that are ingested by eating, snorting, injecting or vaporizing (similar to an e-cigarette).[1]

    Understand the risks

    Flakka can dangerously raise body temperature and lead to kidney damage and failure. Flakka can also lead to violent aggression and self-injury, and has been linked to suicides and heart attacks. Its long-term effects are unknown.[1]

    Identify & address use

    Signs of use include paranoia, hallucinations, violent behavior and self-injury. If you’re concerned your child may be using flakka or other substances, the following can help you address the behavior more effectively.

    A few simple tips and guidelines can go a long way toward spotting issues with drug use earlier rather than later.
    Learn more
    It can be scary if your child is using drugs or alcohol, and it's important to confront it. We're here to give you tips and strategies on how to do it.

    Last Updated

    October 2023

    [1] DEA “Flakka (alpha-PVP).” Drug Enforcement Agency, 2017. Web. Accessed 26 Oct. 2018.

    Additional Sources:

    National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA)

    Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA)