Mephedrone – more commonly known by its street name ‘meow meow’ –  belongs to the cathinones chemical group, a group similar to amphetamine compounds. Mephedrone is similar to  drugs such as MDMA, speed, and methamphetamine.

Mephedrone affects the body in a way that produces feelings of euphoria, empathy, alertness and talkativeness. It can also cause adverse effects such as anxiety and paranoia. It causes the body to overstimulate the heart and circulation. In rare cases, it can stimulate the nervous system by such a degree as to cause fits.

To escape the law, companies selling the drug online claimed it was plant food, bath salts or research chemicals and not fit for human consumption.

The effects of Mephedrone have been described as similar to a combination of amphetamines, ecstasy and cocaine. These effects last around one hour depending on the amount taken. Once users have taken the drug they feel an uncontrollable desire to finish the rest of their supply. This is known as ‘fiending’. The chances of getting addicted to Mephedrone are therefore high.

Mephedrone has many street names such as: meph, MCAT, MC, 4-MMC, miaow, meow meow, bounce and white magic.

As of 16th April 2010, the drug Mephedrone was no longer a ‘legal high’. It was declared illegal and banned from importation into the UK. It has been given a class ‘B’ drug status meaning it is illegal to have, sell or give away.  Possession of the drug could mean up to 5 years in jail. Dealing in the drug could mean up to 14 years in jail and an unlimited fine.

Mephedrone’s appearance is described as a fine white to yellowish powder which can be taken in a number of different forms such as being snorted,  swallowing capsules of the drug, placed in wraps of paper and then swallowed, smoked and then inhaled, and in rare cases injected.

The cost of Mephedrone has skyrocketed since its ban, as it was readily available online for anyone to purchase from as cheap as £10 per gram.  Now it is sometimes triple that amount from a drug dealer on the street. Mephedrone’s purity can be low as dealers mix the drug  with other substances such as cathinones and caffeine.

Mephedrone has been proven unsafe, as it has been identified as a cause of a number of deaths in the UK and in Sweden. Other reported effects include Heart palpitations, severe nosebleeds, cold sweats, the grinding of teeth, sudden memory loss, vertigo and many more.

One known user  who became dependent on the drug used it for 18 month. He  twice weekly experienced shocking effects such as hallucinations, agitation, mania and excitability. In this case, the said person had to be admitted to a psychiatric ward of a hospital for treatment. There is evidence to suggest that Mephedrone use long term can cause impotence and it has very dangerous effects when used.