The flesh-eating drug Krokodil made its horrifying United States debut two weeks ago in Arizona, but as many feared, its use has spread: there have now been three reports of the drug in a Chicago suburb.

Krokodil, the inexpensive “heroin substitute” that is really just a mix of codeine and gas or paint thinner, causes gangrene, abscesses, and skin to fall off the bone. A hit of the drug costs only $8 compared to the $25-30 premium for heroin. But when thinking about long-term investment, heroin might make more sense if you’d like to keep your fucking skin. Dr. Abhin Singla of the Presence St. Joseph Medical Center in Joliet tells of walking into the hospital Monday when he "overheard a nurse speaking about heroin and then caught the distinctive odor of rotting flesh.”

According to Dr. Singla, all the three patients being treated at the hospital have similar backgrounds: they’re all female, they’re all between the ages of 18 and 25, and they all come from middle-class backgrounds in the suburban Joliet area. While one of the patients knew she was taking the drug, the other two—frighteningly—did not. Joliet doctors are now in the beginning of an “excruciatingly painful fight to save their arms, legs, fingers and toes from amputation and their skin from rotting away.”

Will County already struggles with a “burgeoning” heroin epidemic and officials are concerned this might be the beginning of a much greater Krokodil problem.

[Screengrab via The Doctors TV]