Christie Ethridge and Kristen Reed, WXIA
11:51 AM. EST November 16, 2017
Kratom is a pure herb in style in some circles for its perceived energy to ease signs starting from opioid withdrawal to fatigue and diarrhea. It can be on the middle of a brand new Food and Drug Administration public well being advisory after at the very least 36 folks have died taking it.
Bob Grove’s son John is a type of folks. Jon was 34 years previous when he died. When he arrived to Northside Hospital in Cherokee County, medical doctors gave him a number of doses of the drug that reverses overdoses however he did not reply.
John died on November 19, 2016. Autopsy outcomes revealed that that he overdosed on Mitragynine, or Kratom. The overdose compelled a coronary heart badault. He additionally had blood on his lungs.
That’s when Bob discovered the reality about what his son had been taking.
John had been off opioids for 2 years earlier than his loss of life however he had apparently been chewing Kratom to remain below the radar of his probation officer. John had a felony drug conviction and took common drug checks however Kratom is not unlawful.
“I think he was doing this to get his high and still pbad the drug court testing — which he did, successfully,” he mentioned.
It has by no means been unlawful in Georgia. Has by no means been a federal legislation banning Kratom him. If there’s a legislation banning the substance, it’s on the state degree.
The federal authorities needs to vary that. Last yr, the DEA pushed to place Kratom on the Schedule I listing as a result of they are saying it has a excessive potential for abuse, they rescinded it to offer it extra time for public remark. The DEA was ready for the FDA to do their scientific badysis which they now have.
On Nov. 14, the FDA issued their public well being advisory. The advisory reads “evidence shows that kratom has similar effects to narcotics like opioids, and carries similar risks of abuse, addiction and in some cases, death. Thus, it’s not surprising that often kratom is taken recreationally by users for its euphoric effects.”
Dr. Gaylord Lopez is the director of the Georgia Poison Center and mentioned they have been listening to extra about Kraton throughout the nation through the years.
“We are seeing more and more of this in emergency rooms, more and more people having really bad side effects to this drug,” Lopez mentioned.
However, in Georgia, the uptick in circumstances shouldn’t be as steep because the nation as an entire.
Lopez mentioned there have to be extra research performed on the drug.
“For sure there are people who are making all these claims about its effectiveness in everything from opiate addiction to even treating Lyme disease, but the problem is a lot of these reports are anecdotal in nature. There are no clinical trials or studies showing the effectiveness of this drug and, in some cases, you can see people suffer from really bad affects sometimes even death.”
Bob mentioned he is glad extra persons are speaking concerning the drug.
“Hopefully with this news being spread around it will be able to save some lives down the road,” he mentioned.
Bob mentioned his son’s habit began with marijuana.
“He was in and out of drugs for the last 10 years. Started with marijuana and then, of course, it moved fairly rapidly into the opioid, the hydrocodone, oxycodone family,” he mentioned.
“This got him in trouble eventually…He finally got caught enough times for his penalty was severe enough to have him get either a long sentence in jail or two years of the drug court, so he chose the two years of drug court and he was clean for two years.”
John was utilizing Kratom as chewing tobacco, in response to his dad.
“It was under his tongue all the time,” Bob mentioned.
“Sure makes you appreciate living every day. Reading in the air, smelling the smiles, looking at sunlight or rain. Man, you really respect that because when you’re looking down at your child that’s pbaded, what a terrible feeling.”
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