Ohio (WKBN) – A local physician is warning about a frightening new trend among drug users.

Across the country, experts say they’re seeing increased use of opioids like fentanyl in combination with an animal tranquilizer known as Xylazine.

Addictionologist Doctor Heather Mourtacos says the result is 40 times more potent than opioids alone and could be largely resistant to overdose-reversing drugs like Narcan.

“It is used in veterinary clinics for a muscle relaxant…To help the animals during procedures…When combine with the fentanyl, people are acting almost like zombies,” said Dr. Mourtacos.

The doctor says of the side-effects of Xylazine are the destruction of skin cells around the injection site, leading to a zombie-like appearance and eventually amputation of limbs.

Just this week, Governor Mike DeWine declared the drug a controlled narcotic. which could help make it harder for users to get.