But though the embalming fluid burns away, it can still make the joint more potent. Many dealers combine embalming fluid with phencyclidine (PCP), a drug that produces a psychotic high. The formaldehyde in embalming fluid helps PCP adhere to the cigarette, says Holland. As a result, embalming fluid and other formaldehyde-laced chemicals are increasingly disappearing from funeral parlors, hospitals, and morgues.
"My goodness," Jane C. Pearson, supervisor of Pearson Funeral Home in Bethlehem, Pa., recently told Death Care Business Advisor magazine. "That is strange."