People are warned about a series of new dangerous synthetic cannabinoids. According to AAPCC (The American Association of Poison Control Centers) and researchers from 55 poison centers drugs known under the name of Spice, Keisha Kole, K2, AK-47, Summit etc. are linked to a recent dramatic growth in poison center exposure calls.
Starting with January 1 throughout April 22 2015, 1.900 exposure calls were made at poison centers from people who had adverse reactions to some of these drugs. This is four times the number of calls received last year. Moreover in the first three weeks of April almost 1.000 reports of adverse reactions to spice were received by state poison control centers. Only on Thursday there were 172 cases reported. This is a record for the most reports gathered in only one day this year.
Spice is a synthetic substance which imitates the effects of marijuana. In the cases reported this year the substance was used alone or in combination with other substances. Persons who had consumed spice were rushed to the hospital exhibiting violent behavior, severe anxiety and delusion. Some of the cases ended with the death of the patient. Such increased cases were reported in New York, Alabama, Florida, New Jersey, Texas and Arizona.
Jay Schauben, AAPCC president, said that the fatal risks which these synthetic drugs pose are not well known by people who consume them.
Also known as THC homologs, products containing synthetic marijuana are not in fact similar, but on the contrary, very different from marijuana. These substances are imported into the US and they are usually pulverized on plant material or combined in various ways. Besides anxiety and agitation, the drug can generate high blood pressure, racing heartbeat, nausea, vomiting, seizure, tremors, muscle spasms, psychotic episodes, hallucinations and even harmful or suicidal thoughts or actions.
Experts could not tell whether the higher number of cases reported this month was the cause of an increased use of drugs or the cause of a dangerous formulation. The director of the Louisiana Poison Center, Mark Ryan, suggested that a large number of the cases seemed to have contained a form known as mab-chminaca.
Chief at CDC’s Health Studies Branch, Dr. Amy Wolkin, says that the number of people who perceive these drugs as harmless is dangerous. The director of the Coordinating Center for the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), Dr. Eric Wish remarked:
“Our research shows that people are playing Russian roulette with their lives because only the chemist creating the synthetic cannabinoid really knows what is in it.”
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