KY woman details terrifying ordeal after picking up $1 bill she suspects was laced with fentanyl

A Kentucky woman detailed her harrowing experience when she had a severe adverse physical reaction after picking up a one dollar bill that she found on the ground and had to be rushed to the hospital, expressing her belief that the money may have been laced with fentanyl.

Renee Parsons was traveling with her husband Justin and two of her six children to a conference in Dallas when they stopped at a Nashville area McDonald’s to use the restroom where she saw the dollar on the ground and scooped it up, only to soon experience a reaction that ended with her in the emergency room.

“All of a sudden I felt it start in my shoulders and the feeling was quickly going down my body and it would not stop,” Parsons wrote in a Facebook post describing her ordeal.

“I said, ‘Justin, please help me. Im not kidding I feel really funny’, I grab his arm not thinking and then my body went completely numb, I could barely talk and I could barely breath,” she continued. “I was fighting to stay awake as Justin was screaming at me to stay awake and trying to talk to 911 and find the closest Fire Station or Hospital. I passed out before we arrived at the hospital, but thankfully they worked almost as quickly as my husband did to get me there. It took a few hours and some meds, but I eventually started feeling somewhat normal again.”

(Video: YouTube/WKRN)

“To me she looked like she was dying,” her husband Justin told Nashville ABC affiliate WKRN. “She was  certainly unconscious and looked very pale,”

He said that he also felt side effects after his stricken wife grabbed his arm with the hand that she had used to pick up the bill, “My lips started going numb and my arm broke out in a rash,” he said.

“The police officer that came to take our report told us it was one of two things; either the dollar bill was accidentally dropped and it had been used to cut and or store the drugs or it was purposely left with drugs on it,” Parsons wrote on Facebook. “Either way, this is absolutely real and sad. The mixture of my wet hands and the alcohol from the wipes, mixed with my body’s reaction to that drug could of cost me my life.”

(Image: Screengrab/Facebook)

“The family says the responding Metro police officer told them the dollar bill had likely been used to cut or store drugs,” WKRN reported although a spokesperson for the Metro Nashville Police told the outlet that “they didn’t see any grains present on the dollar bill and took it to the property room to be destroyed.”

Medical experts appeared to be skeptical that Parsons’ reaction was due to picking up drug-tainted money.

“The risks of exposure through the skin are incredibly, incredibly small,” Bloomberg School of Health professor Dr. Caleb Alexander told the outlet.

“The risk is quite low, but theoretically, yeah, someone could touch it with their skin and then if they touch their eyes or their mouth or their nose then theoretically, they could have an exposure that way,” he said.

“I can’t just put my hand in a bag and touch some powder and overdose from fentanyl. You pick up that, the dollar bills and maybe there’s a bunch of powder in there and put that in your mouth then that’s a different scenario. You can certainly overdose from ingesting a good amount of powder,” Edwards added.

Parsons closed her Facebook post with the advice, “I don’t care if it’s a $20 bill or a $100 bill do not touch it!!!”

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