Kansas wants to track promethazine sales

July 30, 2014

With evidence that more people are using it a recreational drug, the Kansas Board of Pharmacy has recommended adding promethazine with codeine syrup to the list of drugs tracked by the state.

With evidence that more people are using it as a  recreational drug, the Kansas Board of Pharmacy has recommended adding promethazine with codeine syrup to the list of drugs tracked by the state.

If legislators add the drug to the Kansas Tracking and Reporting of Controlled Substances program, pharmacists would have a readily accessible record of people buying promethazine with codeine. Law enforcement officials would need a search warrant to access the information.

Debra Billingsley, executive secretary of the pharmacy board, told legislators that promethazine with codeine syrup is being abused as a recreational drug, particularly by high school students.

“It is mixed with Sprite or Mountain Dew and, optionally, a Jolly Rancher hard fruit candy for sweetness,” Billingsley said in written testimony to state legislators. “The mixture is often called by the slang names ‘purple drank,’ ‘sizzurp,’ ‘lean,’ ‘syrup,’ ‘drank,’ 'barre,’ ‘purple jelly,’ ‘Texas tea,’ or ‘Tsikuni.’ ”

Billingsley said many pharmacists have reported suspected abuse of promethazine with codeine syrup to the pharmacy board.

 

 "We had a whole lot of pharmacists contacting the advisory committee and advising them it's fast-moving now," Billingsley told the Topeka Capital-Journal. "During cold and flu season it should be a fast-mover, but other times it shouldn't be."

Promethazine with codeine combines an antihistamine sedative with a narcotic pain reliever and cough suppressant. Its recreational use has been glorified in some hip hop music.