Skip to content

Dumfries and Galloway Alcohol and Drug Partnership (ADP)

Trends and Alerts

Bromazolam and Metonitazene

Public Health Scotland have notified Alcohol and Drug Partnerships (ADPs) that recent results from the anonymous drug-testing project WEDINOS (based in Wales) have shown substances sold as Diazepam to contain both bromazolam and metonitazene from several areas in Scotland (Lothian, Grampian, Argyll and Bute & Lanarkshire).  This is very concerning as these drugs can be particularly harmful, and people may use the tablets without knowing what substances they contain.   Whilst not confirmed, there have been some reports of people using tablets that are called Martin Dow Diazepam (which have been found to contain bromazolam and metonitazene) in the Stranraer area.

These substances are believed to contain a mixture of drugs and pose an increased risk of harm.

Local service providers and organisations who are in contact with people who use drugs have been informed of the situation.

Bromazolam is very potent and produces strong sedative and sleep-inducing effects. A few ‘grains’ of powder can be enough to cause overdose and therefore it presents a substantial risk.

Nitazenes (like metonitazene) are a type of synthetic opioid drug. They can be at least as strong as fentanyl and can be hundreds of times more potent than heroin. They are known to have led to accidental overdoses and deaths of people in several areas across the UK.

For more information on signs of an overdose click here:

For more information on naloxone click here:

Harm Reduction Advice: 

The way drugs are used might need to change to avoid overdose:

  • Mixing different drugs is common, but it is more likely to cause an overdose. Try to use one at a time. If you are going to mix drugs, use less of each.
  • Try not to use drugs alone, and don’t let your mates use them alone either. Watch out for signs of overdose in your friends. The signs include difficulty breathing, blue colouring to the lips or fingertips, unresponsiveness, and limp limbs.
  • Always carry Naloxone. It’s available from all treatment providers. If someone overdoses, give naloxone to them and call an ambulance.
  • Naloxone only works on opioids. However, if you suspect someone has overdosed give them naloxone even if you’re not sure they have taken an opioid. It will not harm your friend.
  • Due to the potency of Nitazenes you may need to administer multiple doses of naloxone.
  • If you use opioids every day your local drug treatment service can support you and prescribe alternatives such as methadone and buprenorphine. Even if abstinence isn’t your goal these alternatives can help keep you safe. You will know what you are taking and your risk of overdose may be reduced.
  • If you are already in treatment for opioid dependence and you don’t want to use on top, speak to your worker and make sure you’re getting the right dose.