1. mjb0871
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    mjb0871 New Member

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    Drugs to knockout someone

    Discussion in 'Research' started by mjb0871, Mar 29, 2013.

    Hi. I have an idea for my first novel and I need a drug, either taken orally or intramuscular to knock a person out for over 24 hours. Any ideas?
    Thanks
     
  2. GingerCoffee
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    GingerCoffee Web Surfer Girl Contributor

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    Very few drugs (if any) are going to have that long of a half life and that wide of a lethality range.

    In other words, if it lasted that long chances are the peak effect would be fatal and if it wasn't fatal it wouldn't last that long.

    You need a combination drug, like Rohypnol and something longer acting.
     
  3. psychotick
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    psychotick Contributing Member Contributor

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    Hi,

    I tend to agree with Ginger in that any drug that could cause such long term unconsciousness is likely to be dangerous, and the dose would have to be precisely measured.

    Traditional drugs that would cause unconsciousness woult be things like chloroform and ether breathed in, but these wear off quickly when the victim breathes fresh air. Alcohol is always a good one so maybe you could spike someone's beer with something like two hundred percent alcohol, but again dose is important. And Rohypnol as mentioned does cause many hours of unconsciousness.

    However my thought would be that you need to be looking at the opiate family, heroin, morphine etc. These can cause longer periods of unconsciousness but are also dangerous and come with side effects.

    Cheers, Greg.
     
  4. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    Do you mean reliably knock someone out for that long, or merely one that could have that effect?

    I agree with the previous two comments, but a near-fatal dose might knock someone out for an extended period. For example, people have ended up in a coma after a dangerously high dose of barbiturates.

    But the next person to receive tat dose, or even a smaller one, might never awaken at all.
     
  5. TrueMiszou
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    TrueMiszou New Member

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    Does the audience NEED to know which drug it is? You could always make one up or just mention the effects (which you could make up) but never mention the drug. Maybe shroud the drug in mystery, like it's something new.

    I'm not sure anything exists that meets your needs. The closest I can think of is a very scary drug known as "The Devil's Breath", when even the tiniest bit is inhaled, can make you do whatever you are told to do, people in certain countries (I think Congo but I'm not sure) have been known to use it to "rape" people because they just do whatever you tell them to. Scary drug, but it also has a high mortality rate. Not sure how long it lasts, maybe do a google search.
     
  6. TrueMiszou
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    TrueMiszou New Member

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    Does the audience NEED to know which drug it is? You could always make one up or just mention the effects (which you could make up) but never mention the drug. Maybe shroud the drug in mystery, like it's something new.

    I'm not sure anything exists that meets your needs. The closest I can think of is a very scary drug known as "The Devil's Breath", when even the tiniest bit is inhaled, can make you do whatever you are told to do, people in certain countries (I think Congo but I'm not sure) have been known to use it to "rape" people because they just do whatever you tell them to. Scary drug, but it also has a high mortality rate. Not sure how long it lasts, maybe do a google search.
     
  7. LordKyleOfEarth
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    LordKyleOfEarth Contributing Member Contributor

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    I don't think it exists. That said, you could take a queue from The A-Team and just never mention the drug. Mr. T gets KO'd in nearly every episode, but they never tell you what they are using.
     
  8. GingerCoffee
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    I think it's ridiculous when people are conveniently knocked out with a blow to the head or a woman conveniently 'faints'. I think readers and viewers are tired of seeing the medical mistake, but what do I know.

    However, if you give a person a drug and they are unconscious for a very long period of time, at least some readers are going to be critical of that plot device. Incredulity can only be stretched so far before readers balk and think it damages the plot.
     
  9. T.Trian
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    T.Trian Overly Pompous Bastard Staff Supporter Contributor

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    That's one of my pet peeves (and I know it's one of KaTrian's, too). Way too often the hero(ine) gets pummeled in epic duels but keeps on fighting until the glorious end when the bad guy finally goes down. And in the next scene, when it's convenient, the same steel-headed MC gets KO'd with one punch from whomever (and often stays down just long enough to wake up when it's, again, convenient for the plot).

    To the OP: does the victim have to recuperate completely? E.g. many opiates cause problems with oxygen intake when you OD, so afaik some brain damage is a possibility. Sometimes people who've OD'd on some opiates and are unconscious/wavering on unconsciousness breathe funny, in these quick, short gasps when the body tries to draw in more air, but not enough reaches the brains. Or that's what a paramedic said on one such occasion. For instance, a synthetic opioid, tramadol, does that. It also has a fairly long half-life when compared to heroin, morphine, and codeine. Buprenorphine has a half-life of 20-70 hours, but I don't know much about the drug so can't say if it'd be more suitable for this purpose.
     
  10. chicagoliz
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    chicagoliz Contributing Member Contributor

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    I'm kind of a PITA as far as believability in fiction, so for me, it would matter. I'd be distracted by asking "what drug does that? It doesn't sound like any drug I know, and how is he not dead if he's out for 24 hours?"

    Depending on what kind of story you have, if you have some kind of scientist involved who could invent a drug like this and you could somehow explain how it would work, yet not be lethal. Or you could have some drug that initially knocks them out, but then have someone administering some kind of anesthesia to keep them under. That, of course, would entail a pretty elaborate set-up, which might not work with your story.

    Many people, however, are much more forgiving than I am, as far as how believable details must be.
     
  11. T.Trian
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    Btw, is it necessary for the character to be completely unconscious for the 24h? Or is it enough that the drug knocks them out for a while and after that they're basically awake, but in such a stupor that you could do whatever you wanted to them?
     
  12. GingerCoffee
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    Buprenorphine doesn't knock you out. It's closer to methadone, you get less high but it can prevent opiate withdrawals. Tramadol probably isn't better choice for this story.

    But one could make up a new drug. Then it could do whatever the writer wanted.

    Those massive head poundings are also a pet peeve of mine. There's never any serious brain damage or swelling that would most certainly occur if one was hit about the head that hard.
     
  13. captain kate
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    captain kate Active Member

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    There are, as Ginger said, very few drugs with that kind of half life. Even the 'date rape' drug has an extremely short lifespan in the human body. Most times it's out of the system before the victim wakes up, gets her wits back, and calls the police. My advice, being in the forensics field, is just create one on your own and go from there.
     
  14. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    Date rape drugs could be a plausible basis for a fictional designer drug tht fits the bill.
     
  15. LordKyleOfEarth
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    Or a drug that renders the user exceptionally vulnerable to post-hypnotic suggestion. After dosing, the villain need only tell the victim that they are unconscious for 24 hours.
     
  16. GingerCoffee
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    Is there evidence real post hypnotic suggestion actually works?
     
  17. LordKyleOfEarth
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    Not really, only if the subject wants to do it. If you want to eat less cake, it can help. If you tell them to kill the president of Uzbekistan, the subject will not board a plane and fly to Uzbekistan to kill the president. Although, a designer drug that makes it work could exist (in fiction). It'd be a ridiculous solution, but if the story is light-hearted, it could work.
     
  18. TimHarris
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    Is it necessary for him to be unconscious or can he be merely incapacitated? A high dose of a hallucinogen like 2c-b or 2c-i injected into the blood stream can make a person trip for almost a day before sending the poor bastard into a temporary coma. The effects happen within 15 seconds or so.
     
  19. Huck
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    Maybe ketamine, a strong dose may cause: Things move in slow motion, buzzing or ringing in the ears, disconnection from one’s surroundings, loss of co-ordination and motor skills up to and including the inability to move.
    It would be interesting for the victim to suffer those effects, then once in a state that he cant move, he could watch as he's injected with something else or fitted with a drip, the drip becomes empty, the victim is able to move again after it wears off, he probably would have already passed out long ago also.

    Or you could go with something less well known, I read a book once called "My Colombian Death", in Colombia he try's Yage (ayahuasca, caapi, drug, jungle drug, natema, tiger drug, yale, yaks), in the book he went through a period of thinking he was going to die & I think also an out of body experience. Anyway its sounded so bad that if on it I can imagine you could be in a state where your too scared to leave the room, so it would make for quite a dramatic scene in your story.
    To make it last longer & possibly cause him to completely blackout for long periods I'd just go with the reasoning that the witchdoctor simply brewed a crazy concoction that needs no explaining, even if it could be explained the reader doesn't want to be reading technical scientific jargon - think about it only commonly known drugs have short names, start talking about the lesser known stuff & using the scientific names would ruin the flow of your story anyway.

    I should go write something like that lol
     
  20. BillC
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    Doxylamine? I take an over-the-counter painkiller for back pain that includes this as an ingredient to help you sleep. I can't take it on a school night because the Doxylamine has a half life, even at the regular dosage, that leaves me a bit spacey until morning tea - kids are like "Wow! Sir's really mellow this morning!".

    My wife (who is of slighter build that I) takes a half dose and it puts her out like a light for 12 hours - perfect for plane flights in cattle class. We call it 'discount business class' - $7 a pack is cheaper than $7k a ticket!
     
  21. Daniel
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    Daniel I'm sure you've heard the rumors. Founder Staff Contributor

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    I think Phenazepam is your best bet. It's similar to Rohypnol in that it's a benzodiazepine, but it's half life is 60 hours and it's actually much easier to get. It also can cause blacking-out/memory loss.
     
  22. David K. Thomasson
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    It might depend on the specific circumstances. If you can involve a pharmacist in the plot, he could devise a time-release anesthetic capsule that might do the trick. Or, if the circumstances allow for an IM drug, maybe consider an IV instead, one with a pump that releases the anesthetic in gradual doses (as morphine is sometimes given to patients for major pain management).
     
  23. live2write
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    Try Soma (carisoprodol). I have been prescribed it before by my doctor. It only remains in the system for 4 hours, however at a high dosage can knock a person out for 15+ hours. Trust me, my doctor said "take two and call me in the morning." I did not call back for 2 days.
     
  24. Kaynic
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    I have to agree with most of the suggestions here; a drug capable of causing unconsciousness for 24 hours is highly dangerous and likely doesn't exist. However, if your assailant has access to medical equipment, a paralytic agent alongside anesthesia would work--used in surgeries, after all, but then it's highly unlikely and unbelievable that anyone who is not a trained anesthesiologist is going to be able to keep someone alive. Honestly, a disassociative drug like ketamine might be your best bet here, but it's not going to keep someone unconscious for 24 hours and overdose is very possible.
     

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