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GBL Treatment Centers

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What is GBL?

  • Description of GBL?

    GBL is a colorless liquid with a weak but distinct odor that is commonly used as solvent and reagent in chemistry. It has also used as a flavoring, as a cleaning solvents, as a superglue remover, and as a solvent in some wet aluminum electrolytic capacitors. However, for when used in humans it acts as a precursor that is rapidly converted metabolically into GHB, and can be used as a recreational depressant.

  • What is the Scientific Name of GBL?

    Gamma-Butyrolactone

  • What is the Chemical Formula of GBL?

    C4H6O2

What is the Origin of GBL?

GBL abuse is linked directly to the use of another compound called gamma hydroxybutyrate or GHB which naturally occurs in very small amounts in the human body. Evidence points to GHB’s function as neurotransmitter in the brain. GHB was first synthesized in a laboratory in the 1960s by French Physician Dr. Henri Laborit and it was used as an anesthetic and sleep aid until its potential for abuse was discovered. It was used in many unregulated dietary supplements and taken mainly by bodybuilders, who believed it could affect hormones and promote muscle growth. The product became much more popular as a club drug and in some cases a date-rape drug. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) ordered a ban on the commercial sale of products containing GHB in November 1990, after an extensive investigation of nearly sixty illnesses connected to GHB. The fall of GHB became the rise of GBL as users searched for a replacement to produce the same effects as GHB. Until recently, GBL was also sold as a dietary supplement in health food stores and fitness centers. GBL causes the same effects as GHB because when it is consumed it is rapidly converted into GHB by the body’s metabolic system.

When GBL is used for human consumptions it is regarded as a controlled substance under Schedule I of the "Controlled Substances Act", otherwise GBL is regulated as a List 1 controlled chemical.

What are the common street names of GBL?

  • Easy Lay
  • Fantasy
  • G
  • GBH
  • Georgia Home Boy
  • Goop
  • Great Hormones at Bedtime
  • Grievous Bodily Harm
  • Liquid Ecstasy
  • Liquid X
  • Poor Man's Heroin
  • Scoop

How is GBL Used?

In general GBL is sold as a supplement in 125ml bottles that can be measure out into smaller doses using a pipette. When taken orally, GBL is converted in the body to gamma hydroxybutyrate or GHB to produce similar effects as large quantities of alcohol.

How Long Does GBL Stay in Your System?

GBL begins to take effect between 10 and 60 minutes after consuming it and it can remain in a person’s system for up to 24 hours.

What are the Signs and Symptoms of Short-Term GBL Use?

People who use GBL may not appear intoxicated and can act normal but will commonly have no memory of the time the drug is in effect, which is why it is sometimes used as a date-rape drug. Because of this, it can be very difficult for people to identify if a friend or acquaintance has been drugged.

  • What are the Short-Term Effects of GBL Use on the Body?

    • Aspiration
    • Coma
    • Death
    • Hypothermia
    • Lethargy
    • Loss of Bowel Control
    • Nausea
    • Respiratory Arrest
    • Seizures
    • Vomiting
  • What are the Short-Term Effects of GBL Use on Behavior?

    • Agitation
    • Confusion
    • Severe Amnesia

What are the Signs and Symptoms of Long-Term GBL Addiction?

  • What are the Long-Term Effects of GBL Use on the Body?

    • Coma
    • Death
    • Fatigue
    • Hypothermia
    • Loss of Bowel Control
    • Respiratory Arrest
    • Seizures
  • What are the Long-Term Effects of GBL Use on Behavior?

    • Agitation
    • Confusion
    • Long-term Amnesia

How to diagnose if you are Addicted to GBL?

Because of a steep tolerance curve that comes with GBL use, addicts will consistently need more and more of the substance and will actively be seeking it out.

What are the Withdrawal Effects of GBL?

  • Anxiety
  • Confusion
  • Hypertension
  • Insomnia
  • Nausea
  • Tremor
  • Vomiting

How is GBL Addiction Treated?

Much like other depressants such as alcohol, withdrawal symptoms from GBL can be very severe so it is strongly recommended that patients undergo medically supervised detox before beginning a rehabilitation program.  Physicians recommend that more precautions be set in place regarding GBL product safety, and that patients should seek treatment services at facilities that specialize in GBL-related problems. The widespread use of GBL suggests that primary care physicians should become more aware of its potential adverse effects and develop modes of treatment for drug-using patients who attend their clinics.

What is the Extent of GBL Use?

Since GBL and other similar supplement are metabolized into GHB, it is difficult to collect accurate statistics about its prevalence. However, it is still widely available since it is used as a chemical in many industrial cleaners. It is possible even to find kits on the internet that contain GBL and the required amounts of the other ingredients, along with supplies and directions for the manufacture of GHB, so it is clear there is still a high demand for GBL and GBH.  A large number of the supplemental products that contained GBL have been removed, however, many of those have been replaced by other supplements such as butanediol (BD) which also metabolizes into GHB in the body.

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