British woman, Emma Davies from Gloucestershire, has been accused of shoplifting on 15 January and was due to appear at her court hearing. Unable to do so after taking the "flesh-eating zombie" drug, Davies had to be hospitalized.
The 41-year-old is the first person to be named in Britain suffering from the addiction to Desomorphine.
According to NHS Addiction Services, Desomorphine (dihydrodesoxymorphine), also known as 'Krokodil', is an opiate drug that comes as a white powder that can be swallowed or injected. Among its side effects is reported tissue damage, caused by contamination of the substance and/ or unsafe injecting practices.
Extreme skin ulcerations, infections and scale-like skin gave the drug its name "Krokodil." Among other most common reported complications of Krokodil use are serious vein damage, soft tissue infections, necrosis and gangrene.
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Addiction to the drug leads to decrease in person's life expectancy, with those using it usually estimated to have two years to live.
It is relatively easy to make the drug by using over-the-counter ingredients, which adds to its spreading and accessibility.
Before Davies' case of Krokodil use became public, all confirmed reports of Krokodil use seem to have originated from Eastern Europe and, in particular, Russia, according to the NHS.