Cocaine is one of the most potent naturally occurring stimulants. It is extracted from leaves of the coca plant (Erythroxylon coca), which is indigenous to the Andean highlands of South America. Street names for cocaine include:

  • Coke
  • Yayo
  • Snow White
  • Crack

Cocaine is a very addictive drug classified as a Schedule II Substance under the DEA’s illegal drugs list. However, cocaine hydrochloride, the cocaine mechanism of action, can be used for legitimate medical purposes as a numbing agent in surgical procedures. When used illicitly, the drug is usually processed down to a fine white powder for cocaine inhalation through the nose. The drug can also be mixed with liquids for cocaine injection via syringe.