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Definition - What does Methaqualone mean?

Methaqualone is a synthetic drug more commonly known as a quaalude. Having an effect similar to barbituates, the drug depresses the users central nervous system. In the past, methaqualone was used as a sedative to treat insomnia. However, because of high potential for abuse and the risk of addiction, the drug is now categorized as a Schedule I depressant under the U.S. Controlled Substances Act (CSA) making it illegal to use or possess in the United States.

Methaqualone is a particularly dangerous drug of abuse because users can quickly develop a high tolerance for the drug. Because the substance affects the central nervous system, depressing both blood pressure and heart rate, an overdose can cause coma and death. As tolerance to the drug increases, so too does the risk of overdose.

SureHire explains Methaqualone

Non-fatal side effects of methaqualone include dizziness, gastrointestinal distress, seizures, and fatigue. Users may also lose control of their movements and experience confusion. This combination of side effects puts users at risk of harm to themselves or others as their ability to drive is impaired.

Users of methaqualone, or quaaludes, can develop a physical dependency to the drug, making addiction recovery difficult. During withdrawal, users may experience a series of symptoms including insomnia and anxiety, muscle tremors, delirium, hallucinations, rapid heart rate, and faintness. In some cases, withdrawal from the drug's use may cause death.

While methaqualone is not one of the substances tested by a 5-panel drug test, it is often included in 9-panel or higher drug tests.

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