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Drug found in pure form of cough remedy banned

Chicago Tribune, May 26, 2006

SPRINGFIELD -- Gov. Rod Blagojevich signed into law Thursday a bill banning the sale of the pure form of a drug commonly found in over-the-counter cough medicines.

The law would make illegal to sell, possess, deliver or distribute dextromethorphan, known as DXM, unless it was obtained through a prescription or an over-the-counter medicine, such as Robitussin, which contains acceptable doses of the drug, Blagojevich said.

The law, which takes effect immediately, arose from the September 2003 death of an Illinois State University student who overdosed on DXM bought in pure form over the Internet, according to a statement from the governor's office.

"The idea that kids can go on line and easily get their hands on a dangerous drug is appalling," Blagojevich said.

DXM, used to get a high or feel hallucinogenic effects, also can cause confusion and dizziness to vomiting and rapid heart beat, according to the Partnership for a Drug-Free America Web site. DXM is also known as "skittles," "robo" or "Triple C," the partnership site said.