Cocaine facts at a glance

The signs and symptoms of using cocaine can include:

  • Anxiety
  • Increased heart rate
  • Aggression
  • Dilated pupils
  • Chest pain
  • Overheating and sweating
  • Nose bleeds
  • Paranoia
  • Lethargy
  • Agitation
  • Hallucinations
  • Reduced appetite
  • Muscle twitches
  • Tremors
  • Nausea and vomiting

The consequences of using cocaine may include:

  • Depression
  • Nasal and sinus congestion
  • Cardiomyopathy – a serious disease in which the heart muscle becomes inflamed
  • Cocaine psychosis
  • Violent or erratic behaviour
  • Eating and sleeping disorders
  • Impaired sexual performance
  • Ulceration of the mucous membrane of the nose
  • Damage to the nasal septum
  • Cardiac arrest
  • Convulsions
  • Kidney failure
  • Stroke
  • Seizures
  • High risk of dependence (addiction), especially if injected
  • HIV and hepatitis infections through needle sharing

Cocaine or cocaine hydrochloride – printable fact sheet (PDF 82 KB)

If you require this document in an accessible format please contact the National Drugs Campaign Team

This pages was last reviewed in March 2014.