'The recent cases of severe bleeding are evidence of the harm synthetic cannabinoids can cause'. Health officials remain with little clues as to what caused the drug contamination, although investigators are resuming their investigation. They said it came in sealed containers with names like Blue Giant and Crazy Monkey.
Three Chicago convenience store clerks were charged on Monday for allegedly selling synthetic drugs laced with rat poison, according to police.
Two people have now been reported dead among dozens of cases of synthetic marijuana users who've turned up to IL hospitals in recent weeks complaining of severe bleeding.
All of the cases required hospitalization related to users coughing up blood, blood in the urine, bloody nose, bleeding gums and other symptoms. There have been 56 cases in the state, including 17 in Chicago and five in Cook County.
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"We continue to see the number of cases rise", said Nirav D. Shah, IDPH director.
Health officials urge those who have purchased synthetic cannabinoid products within the past month - whether it was from a convenience store or a dealer - to not use the product.
These medical emergencies come less than a year after almost 80 people in Lancaster County overdosed on synthetic marijuana in less than 72 hours.
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The number of acute poisonings from synthetic cannabinoids rose sharply between 2010 and 2015, according to a Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report published by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in 2016.
In 2016, 33 people in Brooklyn were made ill from suspected overdoses of synthetic pot. "However, synthetic cannabinoids are unregulated and identifying a source or sources is hard".
The man-made "alternative to marijuana" is a chemical sprayed on dried plant material, then smoked or sold as liquid to be vaporized on e-cigarettes or other devices.
While the substances are often marketed as a safe and legal alternative to marijuana, US officials say that they "affect the brain much more powerfully than marijuana", and "their actual effects can be unpredictable and, in some cases, more unsafe or even life-threatening". Tell your health care providers about the possible link between your symptoms and synthetic cannabinoid use.
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