FDA Issues Advisory About Deadly Risks Associated With Herb Kratom

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The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) advised consumers to avoid using the herb kratom, citing 36 known deaths associated with products containing the substance. Kratom comes from a plant in Southeast Asia. It is used to treat pain, anxiety, depression, and symptoms of opioid withdrawal, The Washington Post reports. It is also used recreationally, because it produces symptoms such as euphoria, the article notes. “There is no reliable evidence to support the use of kratom as a treatment for opioid use disorder,” FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb said in a statement. “Patients addicted to opioids are using kratom without dependable instructions for use and more importantly, without consultation with a licensed health care provider about the product’s dangers, potential side effects or interactions with other drugs.” The FDA noted that there have been reports of kratom being laced with other opioids like hydrocodone. The use of kratom is also associated with...
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DEA Receives More Than 22,000 Comments on Proposal to Ban Kratom

DEA Receives More Than 22,000 Comments on Proposal to Ban Kratom
The Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) has received more than 22,000 comments about its plan to temporarily ban the drug kratom, according to The Washington Post. The agency in October said it would reverse its decision to temporarily make kratom a Schedule I drug in the wake of protests by advocates, scientists and kratom vendors. Schedule I drugs are considered to have a high potential for abuse and to have no currently accepted medical treatment use. The DEA said it would open an official comment period, which lasted until December 1, for people to share their experiences using kratom as a medical treatment. The comments were overwhelmingly opposed to banning kratom, the article notes. Advocates for the drug say it relieves severe pain and helps them overcome addictions to prescription painkillers. The DEA said there has been an increase in poison control center calls involving kratom, as well as 15 deaths...
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Kratom Will Become Schedule I Drug

Kratom Will Become Schedule I Drug
The Drug Enforcement Administration announced kratom, a plant-based drug with opioid-like effects, will become a Schedule I drug. Kratom has long been considered an herbal supplement, USA Today reports. Schedule I drugs are considered to have a high potential for abuse and to have no currently accepted medical treatment use. Last month, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) warned kratom is an emerging public health threat. Kratom can lead to psychosis, seizures and death, the CDC said. “Law enforcement nationwide has seized more kratom in the first half of 2016 than any previous year and easily accounts for millions of dosages intended for the recreational market,” the DEA said in a news release.
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CDC Calls Plant-Based Drug Kratom Emerging Public Health Threat

CDC Calls Plant-Based Drug Kratom Emerging Public Health Threat
Kratom, a plant-based drug with opioid-like effects, is an emerging public health threat, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) warns. In a new report, the CDC says the number of kratom-related calls to poison control centers in 2015 was 10 times higher than in 2010, according to MedPage Today . Last year, poison control centers received 263 such calls. Kratom is often taken in combination with other drugs, such as ethanol, botanicals, benzodiazepines, narcotics, and acetaminophen. Kratom can lead to psychosis, seizures and death, the CDC said. It is on the Drug Enforcement Administration’s Drugs of Concern list, but is unregulated at the federal level.
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