BUFFALO, N.Y. - Concern is growing about a new drug, called "Molly," possibly creeping into Western New York.
This comes after a 17-year-old girl was taken to the hospital Saturday, after possibly overdosing on the illegal drug. According to police, the girl took the drug on Minnesota Avenue in Buffalo at a house party.
Police say the girl took the drug on Saturday at 12:30 a.m. and later in the day, she was taken by friends to a hospital.
A police spokesperson tells us she's now at Women and Children's Hospital getting treatment.
"This is the first one that I've heard of specifically from Molly, but I know these occur and it's Molly today, it's something else tomorrow," said Dr. Gale Burstein, the Erie County health commissioner, who says this is the first reported incident she can think of in Western New York, involving the illegal use of Molly.
Users are lured to the drug, which has been given a nickname, because they think they're getting a purer form of ecstasy.
Molly can be addictive and experts say it's cheap -- only costing about $10 or $20 a pill or in a packet.
"It's marketed as a methamphetamine giving you a high, but you never really know what's in it and don't know how safe it is and what levels you can ingest it safely, there probably really is no safe levels," said Burstein.
Often times Molly is mixed with other substances like bath salts, heroin and cocaine. Side effects can include, anxiety and nausea and the drug could lead to paranoia, convulsions and death.
Medical experts and researchers believe more education is needed about the drug.
And that's why the Research Institute on Addictions at UB released health information about Molly, a month ago to coincide with the start of a new semester.
"One of the things that concerned us was the perception that Molly was a safe drug so to speak and it most definitely is not," said Kimberly Walitzer, deputy director at UB Research Institute on Addictions.
Experts say it doesn't help for pop culture celebrities to show off that they're doing the drug.
This past summer, a music festival in Rochester was canceled because of overdoses on Molly. And the final day of a concert in NYC was also canceled because two people died from using the drug.
U.S. Senator Charles Schumer is pushing federal legislation that would ban the chemical composition of substances in Molly.