A few years ago Tennessee narcotics detectives started running into something they thought was new. It was usually brown, either in a powder or tar form. Addicts were itching for it. Today, they know that heroin, once thought to be a bygone drug from a different era, is back, The Tennessean reports. While heroin once made freak appearances in the Nashville area, police now are making busts worth hundreds of thousands of dollars.
Drug treatment centers suddenly are seeing heroin addicts join the legion of prescription pill addicts. The resurgence in Nashville started three or four years ago. It isn't just a local phenomenon. Communities across the U.S. are grappling with this surprising reappearance of heroin. A 2011 report by the U.S. Department of Justice indicated that Mexico has been ramping up production of heroin, leading to huge increases in border seizures of the drug. How did a drug that had virtually disappeared from many American streets suddenly return? It started with the rise in prescription drug abuse.