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What's 'sizzurp'? A dangerous way for kids to get high

Posted by on Jan. 23, 2014 at 12:36 PM
  • 82 Replies


What's 'sizzurp'? A dangerous way for kids to get high

4 hours ago

Video: Doctors are warning of a cough syrup concoction that young people are abusing to get high. Kids are making the mix, which could be deadly, using soda, candy, and prescription cough syrup. Celebrities are glorifying the mix in music. NBC’s Jeff Rossen reports.

Attention, parents: Young people are using a drink with a funny-sounding name — “sizzurp” — to get high, and the consequences are anything but amusing.

Doctors are warning that the drug, which is made by combining soda, candy and prescription cough syrup with codeine in it, can be deadly. 

“This is a very dangerous drug,” said Dr. Robert Glatter of Lenox Hill Hospital in New York. “It can lead to seizures and essentially lead you to stop breathing.”

Glatter told TODAY national investigative correspondent Jeff Rossen that he’s encountered several teenagers hooked on sizzurp in his emergency room.

“It’s quite addictive,” Glatter said. “The sweetness of the soda and candy combined with the drug itself makes people want to have this all day long. ... They just don’t know how much they’ve had throughout the day and by then, it’s almost too late.”

Need a scam, rip-off or issue investigated? Email Rossen Reports

Exacerbating the problem — and causing the drug to spike in popularity — is the way it’s being glamorized in songs and Internet videos. Also known as “purple drank,” “syrup” and “lean,” sizzurp typically includes Jolly Rancher candy for color and extra sweetness along with soda and prescription-strength cough syrup. The end product is said to provide an instant, euphoric high.

Superstar rapper Lil Wayne, who once praised the cocktail, was hospitalized last March after reportedly overdosing on codeine. He has since spoken out against use of the drug. A representative for Lil Wayne declined to comment on the matter on Wednesday.

Sizzurp also was attributed in the deaths of rapper Pimp C in 2007 and DJ Screw in 2000.

Despite those incidents, there is no shortage of songs and videos glorifying sizzurp use.

“Kids are seeing this all over — on social media, on the Internet,” said Steve Pasierb, president and CEO of The Partnership at Drugfree.org. “They're seeing their favorite music stars talking about this, singing about this and then they turn to the medicine cabinet.”

A recent U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration report said one in 10 teens admits to using cough syrup or cold medicine to get high.

“These are dangerous prescription drugs,” Pasierb said. “Whether they're mixed with soft drinks or mixed with Jolly Ranchers, it doesn't change that fact. This is one of the more dangerous ways, frankly, to get high.”

The best advice for parents? Experts say it’s important to be proactive and warn kids about the dangers of sizzurp, even if you think your teenager would never use it. The drink is popular at parties and appears harmless with its bright colors and sweet taste — but in this case, looks are deceiving.



by on Jan. 23, 2014 at 12:36 PM
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Replies (1-10):
lga1965
by on Jan. 23, 2014 at 12:42 PM
That's horrible. I've never heard of it. What kind of music encouraged using that crap ?
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IandLoveandYou
by Bronze Member on Jan. 23, 2014 at 12:42 PM
Yeah.. Scary.

I knew kids who did this when I was in school.
UpSheRises
by Platinum Member on Jan. 23, 2014 at 12:43 PM
1 mom liked this

Kids have been "trippin on tussin" since i was in high school. How can people not be aware of this kind of stuff?

UpSheRises
by Platinum Member on Jan. 23, 2014 at 12:44 PM

 I was never encouraged by music...only peers.

Quoting lga1965: That's horrible. I've never heard of it. What kind of music encouraged using that crap ?

 

mlg1989
by Bronze Member on Jan. 23, 2014 at 12:46 PM
Thus is far from new. I heard about sizzurp in high school almost 8 years ago.
its disturbing many STILL are just learning about it.
IandLoveandYou
by Bronze Member on Jan. 23, 2014 at 12:46 PM
Well..a handful of rappers glorify this type of high/drug.

When I was in high school it wasn't "sizurp" or whatever. Kids called it "robotripping" as in robitussen.


Quoting lga1965: That's horrible. I've never heard of it. What kind of music encouraged using that crap ?
Twix.Leigh
by on Jan. 23, 2014 at 12:48 PM
1 mom liked this
So essentially their drinking cough syrup? How is this new?? Kids have been doing it for a loong ass time. So they've missed it with sugar to cover the taste? I always wondered how someone could drink that shit, I can barely handle the dosage, nevermind extra. Oh, barf!!
maciymommieof3
by Silver Member on Jan. 23, 2014 at 12:48 PM
1 mom liked this

same here...  never heard of it till now..and sounds like Rap music maybe??

Quoting lga1965: That's horrible. I've never heard of it. What kind of music encouraged using that crap ?


lga1965
by on Jan. 23, 2014 at 12:49 PM
Eww. My kids were in school in the 80's. Things were easier and less crazy then, I guess.

Quoting IandLoveandYou: Well..a handful of rappers glorify this type of high/drug.



When I was in high school it wasn't "sizurp" or whatever. Kids called it "robotripping" as in robitussen.




Quoting lga1965: That's horrible. I've never heard of it. What kind of music encouraged using that crap ?
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maciymommieof3
by Silver Member on Jan. 23, 2014 at 12:49 PM

wow......... but how many people have 'px' strength cough medicine laying around??

Quoting IandLoveandYou: Yeah.. Scary.

I knew kids who did this when I was in school.


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