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Addiction and Substance Abuse

Facial discoloration after cocaine binge



Hi, a friend of mine went on a binge recently. After the left side of her face and part of her neck turned reddish purple. She said it was tingly and sore to the touch. Obviously she needs to stop but I was wondering if you could shed some light on this particular side effect.


Thank you for your question. Cocaine causes tremendous surges in both blood pressure and pulse rate, along with irritability and spasm in blood vessels. That is how it can cause strokes, heart attacks, muscle breakdown and uterus / pregnancy problems. What you describe is hard to pin-point, but massive surges in blood pressure and pulse along with blood vessel spasm can cause these sorts of symptoms. Hope this information is useful.

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Response by:

Ted   Parran, MD Ted Parran, MD
Associate Professor of General Medical Sciences
School of Medicine
Case Western Reserve University