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Assemblymember Akilah Weber, M.D. Announces Legislation Banning ​​​​​​​the sale of “Gas Station Heroin”

For immediate release:
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                             Contact: Tiffany Ryan, Chief of Staff
January 16, 2024                                                           
Assemblymember Akilah Weber, M.D. Announces Legislation Banning
the sale of “Gas Station Heroin”
Sacramento – Today, Assemblymember Akilah Weber, M.D. (D-La Mesa) announced her intention to introduce a bill to ban the sale of products containing the ingredient, Tianeptine. This drug, which is not approved by the FDA[1] for any medical use, is being sold as an ingredient in many products in California stores. Common names for Tianeptine include “gas station heroin,” “ZaZa Red,” or “Neptune’s Elixir.”
“Normally, California leads the way on public health, but with this issue we have some catching up to do,” said Assemblymember Weber. Widely available in stores across California, residents have turned to Tianeptine as an opioid alternative or as an anxiety or depression treatment. Some users may have difficulty stopping use of Tianeptine and experience withdrawal symptoms similar to opioid withdrawals. Effects include agitation, drowsiness, confusion, sweating, rapid heartbeat, high blood pressure, nausea, vomiting, slowed or stopped breath, coma and death[2].  Other states including Minnesota, Michigan, Indiana, Ohio, Tennessee, Kentucky, Georgia, Alabama, and Mississippi have already banned this product due to the side-effects and dangers associated with the drug.
“We need to ensure that the products sold in California are safe and not addictive,” concluded Assemblymember Weber. “While California is in the throes of fighting an opioid epidemic, another highly addictive, and legally sold substance, is making its rounds in our state. Banning the sale of these products will help protect Californians today and in the future.”
This bill will be introduced later this month and will be referred to a policy committee for a hearing in March.
If you or someone you know is dealing with a substance use disorder, find treatment at:
Assemblymember Akilah Weber, M.D. represents California's 79th Assembly District, which includes La Mesa, Lemon Grove, Spring Valley/La Presa, and parts of the cities of El Cajon and San Diego. Website of Assemblymember Akilah Weber, M.D: