Synthetic Cannabinoids (Take 2)

A scary news alert from April 20th (or 420, wink, wink):  Synthetic marijuana (“K2”, “Spice”) laced with rat poison has sickened at least two people in Milwaukee (now it’s actually up to 4 confirmed cases in Wisconsin). From when the index case was identified on 3/8/18 in Illinois through 4/29/18, at least 4 people have died and at least 160 people presented to healthcare facilities in Florida, Indiana, Kentucky, Maryland, Missouri, Pennsylvania, Virginia, and Wisconsin with serious unexplained bleeding. Lab testing found the warfarin-like blood thinner (a rat poison!!) in at least 60 patients and in at least 7 synthetic cannabinoids specimens.  Just goes to show you that you can’t always trust the drug dealers – your health may not be their top priority (this is seriously a sentence I say to a patient in clinic at least once a day). 

Read more

Shocking Increase in Overdoses

Terrifying (health) headline of the week: 52 overdose emergency calls in 32 hours in Louisville (and a whopping 151 overdoses in 4 days). What on earth is going on in Kentucky? Well, it’s not just the Bluegrass State that’s having issues. Use of heroin and other opioids (prescription painkillers, including hydrocodone, oxycodone, etc) has increased pretty much everywhere in the United States. Nationally, data from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) show the number of heroin-specific deaths rose 23% in 2015, and opioid deaths rose 16%.

Read more

Is Marijuana Really a Big Deal?

Teen Marijuana UseIt’s been a wild week. In some states, voting for leaders was not the only thing on the ballot last week. Maine, Massachusetts, Nevada and California passed measures legalizing recreational marijuana. Arizona’s initiative to legalize recreational marijuana narrowly failed. Montana, North Dakota, Arkansas and Florida all voted to legalize medical marijuana. Dr. Allen wrote an excellent blog about medical marijuana last year, so now we’ll focus on recreational marijuana use.

Read more

1 2