Thank you for allowing me to answer your interesting question.
Cocaine does indeed have accepted clinical uses. In fact, it is the
only naturally occurring local anesthetic in medical use today. It is
used in US medicine mainly as a topical anesthetic in eye, ear, nose,
and throat surgery and fiber tube optical examinations of the upper
respiratory and digestive tracts, and occasionally as a topical
anesthetic to ease the painful maladies (lacerations, etc) of the skin
in children. In Europe the drug is also used as a local anesthetic and
vasoconstrictor. There are, however, no currently acceptable medical
uses for cocaine in rock form (crack cocaine) ? Why? Because once it
has been processed with ammonia or sodium bicarbonate (baking soda) as
crack cocaine often is, the substance purity is adulterated and deemed
inappropriate for medical use.
?Cocaine was first controlled in the United States under the Harrison
Narcotic Act of 1914. Currently, cocaine falls under Schedule II of
the Controlled Substances Act. A Schedule II Controlled Substance has
a high potential for abuse, is currently accepted for medical use in
treatment in the United States, and may lead to severe psychological
or physical dependence. Currently, cocaine can be administered by a
doctor for legitimate medical uses, such as for a local anesthetic for
some eye, ear, and throat surgeries.?
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