It wasn’t long ago that we wrote about – and that the world found out about – artist Mac Miller’s tragic death by drugs. The profound and poetic musician had just released his fifth studio album in early August 2018, and near one month later, was found dead in his home following an alleged drug overdose. Mac Miller was 26 years old.
It took months for experts, and for fans, to find out what caused Mac Miller’s death. It wasn’t until November 5th – almost exactly two months after his death – that the L.A. County Coroner’s Office released his toxicology report. Leading up to that, many (like you) were asking questions such as, What did Mac Miller overdose on? Was the overdose intentional or accidental? Was it an overdose at all, or did something else cause him to die? Finally, we have some answers – as well as some insight into the dangerous drugs circling the streets today.
What Drug(s) Did Mac Miller Overdose On?
According to the toxicology report, Mac Miller was found unresponsive in his bed, kneeling forward with his face resting on his knees. On the bridge of his nose was a quarter-inch abrasion and he was bleeding out of one nostril – a common sign of cocaine abuse or nasal inhalation.
At the time of death, the police had found a rolled-up twenty-dollar bill, covered in white powdery residue, in Mac’s right pocket – another indication he was snorting drugs. A line of the same white substance was found on his iPad nearby, along with two baggies of the white powder. An empty bottle of alcohol sat on his nightstand. Prescription pills of all sorts (Adderall, Xanax, and painkillers) were recovered from his home.
But what drug did Mac Miller overdose on? According to TMZ sources, it was not necessarily a lethal amount of one drug that caused him to overdose. Rather, it was a combination of substances. Mac Miller overdosed on a deadly mix of cocaine and fentanyl, and with alcohol in his system, as well.
Why Did Mac Miller Overdose?
Mac Miller overdosed on what the coroner called “mixed drug toxicity,” alluding to the dangerous combination of cocaine and fentanyl. Separate, these drugs are risky enough. Cocaine is a fast-acting stimulant that can cause seizures, heart problems, panic attacks, and insomnia, along with addiction. Fentanyl is a medically-intended painkiller that is 100 times more potent than morphine and 50 times stronger than heroin. It has an extremely high potential for addiction and overdose on its own. Fentanyl, as you may recall, is the most dangerous substance out there today. The smallest amount can be fatal.
Given its dangers and potential for death, you may be wondering why Mac Miller would choose to abuse fentanyl, especially alongside cocaine. The truth is, Mac Miller probably did not know he was consuming fentanyl at all. It’s an unfortunate reality facing the world today. Drug dealers are lacing commonly abused substances – such as cocaine, heroin, and even pills – with deadly fentanyl. Fentanyl is fast-acting and makes users experience more powerful effects. In some sense, it keeps users coming back for more of that powerhouse high. That is, if they survive. Lacing drugs with fentanyl also saves drug dealers money, in that it is cheaper to make than more “upscale” drugs like pure cocaine. The problem is, users do not know what they are consuming, and therefore consume way too much of it.
While the lethal dose will vary depending on a person’s weight, physical tolerance, and experience with drugs, the lethal dose for fentanyl is generally stated to be 2 milligrams according to the DEA. This could be about the size of a pinch, or even a grain, of salt. In comparison, the lethal dose of heroin is said to be much higher, between 75 and 375 mg. If a person snorts cocaine just one or two times, and it is laced with fentanyl, there is a very high risk of fatal overdose. And it will happen right away.
You see, not only is fentanyl extremely deadly, but its outcomes are worsened when other drugs are at play. Cocaine and fentanyl specifically have very conflicting effects in the body. Cocaine stimulates the body. It increases a user’s blood pressure, heart rate, breathing rate, and body temperature. Fentanyl, as an opioid drug, relaxes and numbs the body. Users who take fentanyl may not feel much of anything due to its pain-relieving effects. When taken in combination (e.g. fentanyl-laced cocaine), the effects of cocaine can mask the effects of fentanyl, or vice versa. For example, a person can go into respiratory failure from fentanyl intake, but not know it until the cocaine wears off.
Thinking about why Mac Miller overdosed, it’s important to consider the deadly cocktail taken. Cocaine and fentanyl. Despite Mac Miller’s history with depression and drug abuse, the L.A. Coroner called this an accidental overdose. More than likely, Mac Miller unknowingly snorted cocaine laced with fentanyl.
Fentanyl-related overdoses are on the rise and fueling the fire on the nation’s opioid crisis. What’s more, is that this drug does not discriminate. From famed celebrities to ordinary high school students, college party-goers to ex-heroin abusers, anyone can be hurt by this dangerous drug. It was fentanyl laced drugs that killed famous rapper Lil Peep last year. It was fentanyl that also killed the legendary musician Prince in 2016. The rate of fentanyl overdoses has doubled each year from 2013 to 2016, putting the present day at record-breaking numbers, and that’s only expected to grow.
If your loved one is involved with drug use – whether battling addiction, or using drugs recreationally and occasionally – it is important to intervene. Fentanyl is out on the streets and it is taking the nation (and lives) by storm. In 2016, 2 out of 5 cocaine overdoses involved fentanyl. One-third of fentanyl overdoses also involved heroin. Most users who fatally overdosed on fentanyl did not know they were taking fentanyl at all. It can happen to anyone.
If you or a loved one needs help for a drug addiction, or intervention from dangerous drug abuse, please do not hesitate to reach out. Turnbridge is a respected drug treatment facility for young men and women battling co-occurring disorders and addiction. We are here for you. Call 877-581-1793, or visit us online here to learn more about the dangerous drug fentanyl.