Heroin is a drug manufactured from morphine, which is obtained from the opium poppy. Its effects are similar to those of morphine. Both are central nervous system depressants, and very effective painkillers.
Heroin can come in several forms, but the two most common in Australia are white powder and brown rock. The powder form is dissolved and injected. Dealers normally cut it with other substances, typically caffeine, paracetamol, sugars or starch. The 'brown rock' form of heroin is less pure; it is usually heated and the vapours inhaled. Unrefined heroin (heroin base) is rarely found in Australia.
Use the following websites to find information about specific drugs, including their long and short term effects, how they are used, legal status and information on mixing drugs.
Journal articles are a good source of explanations and discussions of drug and alcohol issues. There are several eresources with links to journal articles available in the State Library.