A new study focused on the poison cases related to the herbal supplement kratom, and the results don’t look too good. It appears that kratom poisoning cases have increased more than 50 fold. The study looked at calls to US poison centres. While in 2011 there were just 13 calls, in 2017 they received 682 calls.
Kratom is a plant that can be used as a herbal supplement and it has gained a lot of attention recently. People believed that it can be used to treat depression, anxiety, pain, and others. Kratom became even more popular on the Internet, which determined a lot of people to use it.
Nonetheless, health officials aren’t that impressed about the miraculous effect of kratom. “Individuals who choose to use kratom need to be aware of the potential risk,” study co-author Henry Spiller said. Those who had to be admitted to a health care facility because of kratom dealt with nausea, rapid heart rate, agitation, high blood pressure and so on. 10% of the patients encountered other effects that threatened their life.
More than that, children were also exposed to kratom, including a newborn which was breastfed by his mother. “As physicians, we need to educate pregnant women on the risks of kratom use during pregnancy and while breastfeeding,” Spiller said.
There are other risks as well, especially when kratom is combined with other drugs. Such risks are not mentioned by kratom products, which puts a lot of people in danger.
“At a minimum, kratom products should be free of potentially harmful contaminants, provide a uniform strength of active ingredients, and have appropriate labeling,” the researchers wrote in their paper. “Increased regulation of kratom products would help guarantee product quality and safety.”