Kratom – A Closer Look

Image result for kratom"The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recently announced that the outbreak of salmonella infection in 20 American states could be linked to kratom products. Out of the 28 cases, California alone reported three, while North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania and Utah had two cases of salmonella infection each. Though no casualty has been reported till now, the whole genome sequencing (WGS) performed on the patients suggest a common source of infection. find out this here 

Salmonella bacteria, found in the intestine of humans and animals, are excreted through the bowel. It finds its way to food through improper handling and can result in diarrhea-kind of conditions. While raw meats and dairy products are the most common sources of salmonella, they can enter other products meant for human consumption in case the appropriate hygiene standards are not met while handling, packaging and transporting them for consumption.

These products also include weed and kratom. Some of the significant sections that stand more vulnerable compared to others to salmonella infection include pregnant women, young children, older adults, people with poor immune, patients undergoing chemotherapy, etc. Unfortunately, the chances of person-to-person transmission is quite high in this type of infection.

Not just a plant, but also a substance more potent than opioids

Many see kratom, a native of Southeast Asia, as a wonder drug due to its pain-relieving properties. However, the latest research indicates that the impact of this drug is similar to opiates, such as codeine, fentanyl and morphine. Among the pain-relieving alkaloids present in kratom, mitragynine is 13 times more potent than morphine. It also inflicts addiction and withdrawal symptoms as witnessed in the case of narcotic withdrawal.

Image result for kratom"

Being a plant-based product, many manufacturers promote kratom as a safe substance for treatment. On the contrary, kratom is similar to opioids in terms of effects and risks. This biased marketing has led to the popularization of kratom across the United States. Thus many people commonly use kratom to treat pain, anxiety, depression, etc. Moreover, the stringent measures against opioid epidemic has diverted users to kratom.

Considering its addictive properties and the recent repercussions on the masses, FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb issued an advisory warning people about the hazards of kratom. Denying any evidence of therapeutic use and benefit of kratom, the FDA took the decisive step to curb the menace from becoming another drug epidemic. Many people abuse kratom to experience opioid-like psychoactive effects. It is also a major roadblock to the fight against opioid epidemic, which claims thousands of lives every year.