Ecuador: clonazepam sales will be controlled to prevent a dangerous viral challenge for children on TikTok

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Affected minors follow a trend that challenges users to consume this drug used for psychiatric illnesses

Ecuador: clonazepam sales will be controlled to prevent a dangerous viral challenge for children on TikTok

By

Yalilé LoaizaFrom Quito

Ecuador: they will control clonazepam sales to prevent a dangerous viral challenge for children on TikTok

Officials from the National Agency for Health Regulation, Control and Surveillance will tighten controls to prevent the illicit sale of the drug clonazepam.

Ecuadorian health authorities ordered control of the sale of the drug clonazepam in 12,000 pharmacies nationwide. This after the easy acquisition of the drug by minors who use it for a viral challenge on social networks was reported.

The < b>National Agency for Health Regulation, Control and Surveillance (Arcsa) together with the Ministry of Public Health (MSP), and the Government of Guayas held a meeting to address the case of children and adolescents who have participated in the TikTok challenge known as the “Clonazepam Challenge” or “whoever falls asleep last wins”. The Ecuadorian newspaper El Universo warned about the presence of several cases in a Guayaquil neighborhood.

Arcsa officials reiterated that clonazepam is considered a controlled substance, so it must be strictly controlled. They also indicated that they will monitor advertising on digital platforms and advertising media to prevent the illegal sale of this drug.

Ecuador: will control clonazepam sales to How to prevent a dangerous viral challenge for kids on TikTok

Clonazepam is a controlled medication used in psychiatric treatment.

Clonazepam is a drug belonging to the group of benzodiazepines that acts on the central nervous system and is used as part of psychiatric treatment for various pathologies.

This drug is used in psychiatric treatmentto control certain types of seizures or to relieve so-called panic attacks, which are sudden and unexpected feelings of extreme fear that can lead to suicide.

In Ecuador, clonazepam it can only be sold with a special permit from the Ministry of Health granted by a treating psychiatrist.The permit consists of a form numbered by the State Portfolio, the size of a prescription, where the psychiatrist indicates the dose, the number of pills to ingest, his signature of responsibility and the stamp where the number of the specialist and permission to grant this type of drugs. However, clonazepam is sold freely in small pharmacies in La Bahía, a popular market, in downtown Guayaquil.

Ecuador: clonazepam sales will be controlled to prevent a dangerous viral challenge for children on TikTok

Authorities from at least three government and state agencies They held a meeting to take action against the “clonazepam challenge”, disseminated on social networks, which has already affected several children and adolescents in Ecuador.

The viral challenge on TikTok consists of ingesting the drug, recording the scene with a mobile phone camcorder, and observing the effects of clonazepam on the body. First-time users experience drowsiness, dizziness, loss of balance, problems with coordination, difficulty thinking or remembering, and drowsiness.The challenge is to hold back the drowsiness produced by the drug and resist falling asleep.

Some even encourage the use of alcohol and other drugs, which could produce a coma in those who ingest this pharmacological cocktail. According to the formulary of the National Library of Medicine of the United States, the indiscriminate combination of clonazepam with alcohol or other drugs can cause intense intoxication leading to death.

According to information from the Faculty of Medicine of the National Autonomous University of Mexico, the consumption of Clonazepam is usually recommended for short periods, because “it can cause dependence after taking the drug uninterruptedly for a long time”.

Ecuador: will control Stop clonazepam sales to prevent dangerous viral challenge for kids on TikTok

The clonazepam challenge has already left several adolescents and children intoxicated in Mexico and now in Ecuador. (Reuters/Special)

When a patient experiences an overdose of clonazepam, “CNS (central nervous system) depression occurs and drowsiness, confusion, coma, and decreased reflexes may occur”, according to the Faculty of Medicine of the National Autonomous University of Mexico. In this case, patients should immediately undergo gastric lavage and their respiration, pulse, and blood pressure should be monitored.

In the last two weeks, in Mexico already 20 students were poisoned by taking controlled medications, mainly clonazepam. In Guanajuato, for example, 15 children between the ages of 10 and 11 were affected. The Federal Commission for Protection against Sanitary Risks of that country warned about the risk posed by consuming this drug, especially in combination with others.

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