Flakka is more common in the US, there have been reports of high usage due to its low cost and it being easily obtained. There have been reports of Flakka use in Australia, however there is no evidence to suggest that it was Flakka!

What is it?

Flakka is a Novel Psychoactive Substance (NPS) made from alpha-Pyrrolidinovalerophenone, which is commonly known as alpha-PVP or a-PVP. 

Other Names

Gravel, PVP, Grind, Crystal love, Pure NRG, Snow Blow, Vanilla Sky


There is no evidence of use of Flakka being in Australia.


Flakka can appear as a white or off-white, odourless crystalline powder. It also comes in crystalline rock form that resembles gravel or rock salt with some darker coloured specks in it.


Swallowing is the most common way of taking Flakka. It is usually mixed with liquid to drink or wrapped in a cigarette paper (known as ‘bombing’). There are also reports of people injecting, smoking and inhaling (snorting).


There have been media reports about this NPS, suggesting that Flakka is stronger than mephedrone, documenting the bizarre behaviour associated with Flakka. Anecdotal reports suggest that effects can last for 3-4 hours, but can also linger for several days. People who use a-PVP regularly can develop a dependence and tolerance to it, and reports suggest that re-dosing is common.

Reported effects include euphoria, hallucinations, elevated body temperature, dilated pupils, jaw clenching, vomiting, paranoia, restlessness and anxiety. 


Difficulty breathing or talking, heart palpitations, distress, agitation and aggression, fever-like symptoms, dizziness, convulsions and psychosis.

With the introduction of NPS’s it is important to treat the symptoms that are being seen. Always call an ambulance if overdose is suspected

Flakka can elicit an excited delerium type state, leading to bizarre behaviour. It is not widely found in Australia.

Harm Reduction Strategies

Encourage a young person to: -

  • Plan for the comedown – Let them know what to expect mentally and physically
  • have a break from using
  • understand the risks involved in mixing other drugs and alcohol, including prescription medication.
  • See more Universal Harm Reduction Strategies
  • be informed about what they are using. Use websites like pillreports and erwoid to research what you are planning on taking.

    Can’t find what you were looking for? Here is some more information about Flakka.