Crack cocaine is a strong stimulant that energizes the entire central nervous system and places damaging stresses on the heart, lungs and brain. It is also very often associated with a dramatic deterioration of the quality of life.
When crack cocaine is smoked, the muscles tense and the heart beats faster. The person experiences exhilaration as a result of the release of specific mood hormones.
At the same time that the heart beats faster, the blood vessels constrict, resulting in elevated blood pressure. At any time, this change can result in a heart attack, stroke or cardiac arrest.