Misuse of scopolamine

Other Names:
Abuse of hyoscine

Scopolamine is a hazardous drug that eliminates free will and can wipe the memory of its victims.  Colloquially known as ‘The Devil's Breath', it is derived from a tree common to South America called the borrachero tree – loosely translated as the 'get-you-drunk' tree. The drug is frightening for the simplicity in which it can be administered.  Odourless and tasteless, it can be blown in the face of a passer-by on the street and within minutes that person can be guided like a child.  It can also induce powerful hallucinations and, like diazepam, blocks memories from forming so that even after the drug wears off victims have no recollection as to what happened.  In high doses, it is lethal.


In ancient times, the drug was given to the mistresses of dead Colombian leaders – they were told to enter their master's grave, where they were buried alive. In modern times, the CIA used the drug as part of Cold War interrogations, with the hope of using it like a truth serum. It is said that Colombian mothers warn their children not to fall asleep under the tree, though the leafy green canopies and large yellow and white flowers might seem appealing.

Problem Type:
G: Very specific problems
Date of last update
03.09.2016 – 07:07 CEST