Some states, including Massachusetts, are reporting a rise in heroin use and deaths. Locally, heroin deaths have increased because as many addicts shift from more costly and harder-to-get prescription opiates to this cheaper alternative.

The local heroin problem is part of a bigger hindrance of opiate abuse, namely the crackdown on opiate pills. Physicians are much more mindful of writing out prescriptions containing opiates.

Because heroin overdoses have tripled, first responders now carry Narcan, on opioid antagonist, that can revive a dying addict. During the recent DEA lecture "Prescription Drug Abuse: A New Subculture of Heroin Addiction," DEA Baltimore District Office Assistant Special Agent In Charge, Gary Tussle, speaks on the major shift from prescription opiates to heroin. Watch the video of this lecture here.