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The Effects of Cocaine

The effects of cocaineon the body are multiple. Three areas that are acutely affected are the central nervous system, the gastrointestinal system, and the cardiovascular system.


The effects of cocaine on the central nervous system are perhaps the most severe and the most damaging. Cocaine inhibits the release of dopamine and other neurochemicals in the brain. This is what causes the euphoric high that users often feel. However, one of the long-term effects of cocaine is that the brain slows down and eventually stops producing these neurons because it is getting them artificially. This can lead to mood and behavior alterations that include paranoia, irritability, restlessness, and auditory hallucinations.

Effects of Cocaine
Effects of Cocaine

A decreased appetite, which can lead to malnutrition, is one of the other effects of cocaine on the central nervous system.

The effects of cocaine on the gastrointestinal system, while not as common, may include abdominal pain, nausea, vomiting, and bloody diarrhea.


The cardiovascular system is another area that suffers from the effects of cocaine. Cocaine causes blood vessels to constrict. This leads to dilated pupils, increased body temperature and heart rate, and blood pressure since there is an increased demand for oxygen by the heart. The most commonly reported cardiovascular problems related to the effects of cocaine are Acute Myocardial Infarction (AMI), commonly known as a heart attack, and various arrhythmias. Strokes, seizures, and convulsions are also some of the cardiovascular effects of cocaine.


Finally, the effects of cocaine are serious and by causing significant damage to the central nervous, the gastrointestinal, and cardiovascular systems, can even be fatal.