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Thursday, November 28, 2013

Faux Marijuana Can Give You Strokes, Studies Say

Posted By on Thu, Nov 28, 2013 at 1:08 PM

click to enlarge Not brain candy - WIKIMEDIA/SCHORLE
  • Wikimedia/Schorle
  • Not brain candy

Kids being kids, it appears our nation's youth will get high at all costs -- including blowing up their brains.

Synthetic marijuana -- the plant clippings hosed down with undetermined chemical concoctions -- has been illegal in California since 2011 (though it's still prevalent in suburbia), and is banned, too, in 42 other states.

Yet somehow, "spice" or "K2" is the country's second-most popular drug for teenagers, with 1 in 9 admitting to trying it, according to one study. That's troubling, considering that spice is just as good as bath salts for frying your brain -- and even more effective for giving yourself a stroke.

Initial research out of Florida suggests that "spice use" may be a cause of strokes in otherwise-healthy teens and young adults in their 20s, according to the Tampa Bay Times. If ever there were an advertisement for legal drugs, this was it -- synthetic weed even makes cigarettes look good.

Researchers at the University of Southern Florida encountered a brother and sister, both of whom suffered strokes after smoking "spice."

A blood clot traveled from their hearts to their brains after using spice, according to a study published in the November edition of the American Academy of Neurology's journal. And since publishing the study, two other individuals had similar spice-strokes, the Times reported.

It's worth stepping back here and asking, "What is spice?" Good luck getting an answer. One media report said it was "lettuce sprayed with Chinese fertilizer." There is literally no way of knowing without a lab analysis -- it's not like ingredients are printed on the side of the package -- which means it's anybody's guess.

Police say spice users have confused cognition and also bouts of aggressiveness. This is the real reefer madness: fake weed can kill your brain. Just don't.

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About The Author

Chris Roberts

Chris Roberts has spent most of his adult life working in San Francisco news media, which is to say he's still a teenager in Middle American years. He has covered marijuana, drug policy, and politics for SF Weekly since 2009.


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