The purpose of this report is to outline the effects of Gamma Hydroxybutyrate (or GHB) on the brain, and how this drug affects the user’s physical health.
If a user continues to use GHB not only affects the brain, but it also affects the user's physical health in terrible ways.
Physical health is important to society because it can help you improve your health and reduce the risk of having different diseases like  diabetes and cancer. Physical activity and exercise can have long-term health benefits, and most importantly, physical activity can help improve your quality of life.
The outline of this report is to gain understanding of how Gamma Hydroxybutyrate (GHB) affects the brain and your physical health. This report includes the chemical properties of GHB, how it is used, and what the symptoms are of this drug in short-term uses.


Gamma Hydroxybutyrate or GHB is a nervous system depressant that is also known as a “club drug” or “date rape” drug. GHB is described to have a mild salty and bitter taste, and is also a colourless and odourless liquid. It can also come as a brightly blue coloured liquid that is sometimes called “blue nitro,” and it can also come as a white crystal powder, but it’s not very common. This drug is mostly used by teens and young adults at bars and other night parties, and is also often placed in alcoholic drinks and is given to unsuspecting victims prior to sexual assaults. 

Figure 1: Chemical Structure of GHB retrieved from:

The drug has been used as a general anaesthetic but was withdrawn by most countries due to unwanted side effects. Some of those negative effects of GHB may include sweating, nausea, hallucinations, amnesia, and loss of consciousness.
The effects of GHB vary depending on how much someone uses it, the effects are felt within 15 minutes and can last for about 2-3 hours. GHB is an addictive drug and high doses of this drug could lead to seizures, coma and even death. If someone stops taking GHB, they may experience withdrawal symptoms because their bodies are adjusting to functioning without GHB. If someone is withdrawing from high doses, then the person may experience a result in serious symptoms and may need medical attention. Withdrawal symptoms usually start for about 12 hours after the last dose and it can continue for about 15 days, some of those symptoms may include insomnia, anxiety, tremors, and sweating.
A very simple way of synthesizing GHB simply consist of mixing lactone and lye (Sodium hydroxide) in the correct amounts. The only equipment that is needed to synthesize is a scale (to measure the grams accurately), a container (for the reaction), pH paper, safe acids such as vinegar, lemon juice, and blue food colouring (to create the blue for “blue nitro”). The chemicals are then mixed in ratios and sold through the internet or through the streets. 
GHB is a liquid, therefore GHB enters the bloodstream when someone drinks the drug, but it can also be inhaled because GHB does come in a powder form.

Figure 2: Chemical Structure of GABA retrieved from:
GHB is also produced normally in the brain through the synthesis of a neurotransmitter called GABA. GABA, or Gamma-aminobutyric acid, is a neurotransmitter that sends chemical messages to the brain and nervous system. When GHB is taken by someone, it affects several different neurotransmitter systems in the brain. The systems that GHB effects are that it can increase acetylcholine levels and serotonin levels, and it can also reduce dopamine activity, mostly around the basal ganglia. 


GHB is used for weight loss, muscle building, and relief of some symptoms including pain, fatigue, and sleep problems. But people that use GHB often, can have a high chance of getting very addicted. GHB have both short-term and long-term effects, but there is not a lot known about the long-term effects of GHB. 
The short-term effects of someone's mental health is the person feeling dizzy (which can last for a few days), they can also feel relaxed or sleepy, and sometimes happy. The person can also experience doing things that they would not usually do and can also sometimes forget things.   
The short-term effects for someone’s physical health include the person losing coordination, and their body temperature will drop. The person can also experience loss of consciousness, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and if someone has a high enough dose, they can have trouble breathing and the drug can also stop people from breathing.
Because GHB is an addictive drug, it’s easy to overdose on it, the symptoms of an overdose include a person can go in a coma, have seizures, have slow breathing, and people can even die from a GHB overdose.
People that stop using GHB or any drug can experience some withdrawal symptoms, some of the mental effects that happen when someone withdrawals from GHB can have the symptoms of insomnia and anxiety. The physical effects that people can experience while withdrawing from the drug is that the person can have tremors, and can even be sweating.


This report gives us an understanding of Gamma Hydroxybutyrate (GHB) and what it can do to the brain and our physical health. GHB was originally used for weight loss, muscle building, and relief of some symptoms including pain, fatigue, and sleep problems. But GHB is addictive and it was withdrawn from use in most countries because of the side effects. This report also includes what the effects GHB does to our body, like  sweating, nausea, hallucinations, amnesia, and loss of consciousness.

Public Education Piece

For my public education piece I made a brochure to advise the general public of the information showed in this report.


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Konkel. L (2015) What is GABA? Retrieved from <>

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Government of Canada (2012) GHB. Retrieved from<>