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Date Rape Drugs


Drugs that have been used in date rapes include flunitrazepam (Rohypnol) and gamma-hydroxybutyrate (GHB).


GHB is a central nervous system depressant. It may also be called liquid ecstasy, G, or soap. GHB may be a clear, odorless liquid or a white powder. It can be added to a drink without a person knowing it. It can cause overdose and death.

At low doses, the person may feel:

  • Drunk or high.
  • Energetic, playful, and talkative.
  • Less inhibited and more sensual.
  • Drowsy, dizzy, or confused.

Side effects include:

  • Headache.
  • Vomiting.
  • Trouble breathing.
  • Memory loss (amnesia).
  • Being conscious but unable to move.
  • Passing out (loss of consciousness), especially when it is combined with alcohol or other drugs.

This drug does not stay in a person's system very long. It may not be found with drug screening tests.


Rohypnol (say "roh-HIP-nawl") is a central nervous system depressant. It's often called roofies. It is similar to prescription medicines like diazepam (Valium), but it's much stronger. One small tablet can produce effects for 8 to 12 hours.

Rohypnol is a tasteless, odorless tablet that can be crushed and dissolved in liquid. It has been used in date rapes, because it can be slipped into a drink without a person knowing it. When this drug is mixed with alcohol, the person may pass out (become unconscious). It can produce a form of memory loss (amnesia). So the person may not remember what happened while they were under the influence of the drug.

This drug is sometimes used to enhance the high of heroin. It may also be used to ease the negative effects of a crack or cocaine binge.

Rohypnol may lead to death when mixed with alcohol or other depressant drugs.


Current as of: November 15, 2023

Author: Healthwise Staff
Clinical Review Board
All Healthwise education is reviewed by a team that includes physicians, nurses, advanced practitioners, registered dieticians, and other healthcare professionals.


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