Breaking News
February 21, 2018 - ‘Grey’s Anatomy’ Traumas Lack Realism
February 21, 2018 - Sleep quality improves with help of incontinence drug
February 21, 2018 - Scientists uncover genetic cause behind typhoid’s antibiotic resistance
February 21, 2018 - Study reveals a significant link between heavy alcohol use and dementia
February 21, 2018 - French scientists develop new wearable laser that eradicates skin conditions
February 21, 2018 - People with major depressive disorder have reduced arginine levels, study shows
February 21, 2018 - National Health Spending at $3.5 Trillion in 2017, CMS Says
February 21, 2018 - Substantial inequalities in cesarean births persist in many countries
February 21, 2018 - Early childhood immune signature predicts risk of developing asthma later on
February 21, 2018 - Stanford researchers explore how gut bacteria respond to common changes in habitat
February 21, 2018 - Household Products May Pollute the Air as Much as Your Car Does: Study
February 21, 2018 - Combo Bests Targeted Agent in mRCC
February 21, 2018 - Researchers discover brain pathway that dissociates opioid addiction from analgesia
February 21, 2018 - Scientists uncover how newly discovered gene helps grow blood vessels
February 21, 2018 - Brain’s quality control process holds clues to obesity’s roots
February 21, 2018 - Researchers to study whether menstrual cups can help prevent vaginal infections
February 21, 2018 - MS patients who feel stigmatized more likely to suffer from depression
February 21, 2018 - Vitamin D supplementation during pregnancy could protect against childhood obesity
February 21, 2018 - Lower-Quality Medical Tx Might Have Skewed Key PCI vs CABG Trials
February 21, 2018 - Love and fear are visible across the brain instead of being restricted to any brain region
February 21, 2018 - Researchers discover potential new antimalarial treatment targets
February 21, 2018 - Adults with congenital heart disease have increased risk for dementia, study finds
February 21, 2018 - Clinical trial studying type 1 diabetes reaches full enrollment
February 21, 2018 - Father’s stress affects the brain development of offspring, mice study shows
February 21, 2018 - ESRD Death Declines in Vasculitis Patients
February 21, 2018 - Taking ibuprofen for long periods found to alter human testicular physiology
February 21, 2018 - Google AI device could predict a person’s risk of a heart attack
February 20, 2018 - FDA Approves Domestic Source for Tc-99m Isotopes
February 20, 2018 - Sanofi rejects refund demand faces Philippine suit over dengue vaccine (Update)
February 20, 2018 - Researchers discover that activation of specific enzyme may help suppress tumor metastasis
February 20, 2018 - Blood or marrow transplantation survivors have higher risk of cognitive impairment
February 20, 2018 - Booze Beats Pot at Being Unhealthy: Oregon Poll
February 20, 2018 - Morning Break: ’20 Years Late’; Drugs in the Dirt; Catching Flu in the Dorm
February 20, 2018 - Another piece to the puzzle in naked mole rats’ long, cancer-free life
February 20, 2018 - Scientists identify four viruses that can produce insulin-like hormones
February 20, 2018 - New e-Health solution developed to prevent cardiovascular disease, dementia in senior citizens
February 20, 2018 - New genetic risk score could help guide screening decisions for prostate cancer
February 20, 2018 - Study finds higher risk of stroke among blacks with atrial fibrillation than whites
February 20, 2018 - Physical activity could be used as strategy for diabetes prevention
February 20, 2018 - Researchers develop sensing method for early detection of cancer and diabetes
February 20, 2018 - New wearable electronics could be game-changer for stroke rehabilitation
February 20, 2018 - Immune history influences person’s response to flu vaccine
February 20, 2018 - Research findings could help develop new drugs to prevent, treat dry eye disease
February 20, 2018 - Serenity Now! Learn to Have Patience with Patients
February 20, 2018 - Computer simulation addresses the problem of blood clotting
February 20, 2018 - Women with type 1 diabetes not protected against coronary artery disease
February 20, 2018 - Persistent bloating can be a sign of ovarian cancer, warns charity
February 20, 2018 - Trump administration proposes rule to loosen curbs on short-term health plans
February 20, 2018 - Key protein involved in epigenetic regulation of gene expression guides skin cell renewal
February 20, 2018 - Heart attack symptoms often missed in women
February 20, 2018 - Diagnosis of celiac disease takes 3.5 years for patients who do not report GI symptoms
February 20, 2018 - Study reveals functional dynamics of ion channels
February 20, 2018 - Study explores link between mortality risk and combustible tobacco use
February 20, 2018 - ‘She Trusted Me, and I’d Turned Her Away’
February 20, 2018 - AbbVie and Voyager Therapeutics collaborate to develop new treatments for tauopathies
February 20, 2018 - Fast food makes the immune system more aggressive in the long term
February 20, 2018 - Therapeutic target for glaucoma could have treatment ramifications for Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s
February 20, 2018 - Overcoming Negative Reviews | Medpage Today
February 20, 2018 - MyD88—villain of allergies and asthma
February 20, 2018 - Food scientists develop rapid screening technique to detect pesticide residue in vegetables
February 20, 2018 - Lab-grown cerebellar cells may help explain how ASD develops at molecular level
February 20, 2018 - Scientists explore connection between bad sleep habits and stiff blood vessels
February 20, 2018 - New Treatment Apalutamide (Erleada) Approved for Prostate Cancer That Resists Hormone Therapy
February 20, 2018 - Do You Really Need My Signature on That?
February 20, 2018 - HIV-1 genetic diversity is higher in vaginal tract than in blood during early infection
February 20, 2018 - Diabetes does not increase work-loss years due to early retirement
February 20, 2018 - Researchers aim to find out how PTSD affects decisions of police
February 20, 2018 - UH Cleveland Medical Center explores novel treatments for uterine fibroids
February 20, 2018 - Flu Vax Efficacy 25% Against Predominant H3N2 Strain So Far
February 20, 2018 - HIV screening most optimal at 25 years of age if no risk factors
February 20, 2018 - Loyola Medicine primary care physician offers advice to minimize risk of flu
February 20, 2018 - Safe sleep recommendations for parents that may help reduce child’s risk of SUID
February 20, 2018 - Why Do So Few Docs Have Buprenorphine Waivers?
February 20, 2018 - Low levels of alcohol good for the brain
February 20, 2018 - Experimental treatment improves invisible symptoms of a man with spinal cord injury
February 20, 2018 - Myriad’s EndoPredict offers better prediction of breast cancer recurrence, analysis shows
February 20, 2018 - Researchers identify fifteen genes that determine our facial features
February 20, 2018 - Morning Break: New Health IT Player; Luxturna No Bargain; Nuclear Freakout
February 20, 2018 - How does it compare? Hospice care at home, at assisted living facility, at nursing home
February 19, 2018 - Scientists develop water-soluble warped nanographene for bioimaging
FDA warning against Kratom strengthened

FDA warning against Kratom strengthened

image_pdfDownload PDFimage_print

Dr Ananya Mandal, MD

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has amped up its warnings against popular herbal drug kratom. The new warning mentions the deadly risks associated with kratom including a case of a teenager who hanged himself under influence.

Mitragyna speciosa,mitragyna speciosa korth (kratom) a drug from plant to a category 5 in Thailand. Image Credit: sarintra chimphoolsuk / Shutterstock

Mitragyna speciosa,mitragyna speciosa korth (kratom) a drug from plant to a category 5 in Thailand. Image Credit: sarintra chimphoolsuk / Shutterstock

The new warning statement issued by the FDA states that the effects of this herbal concoction is yet to be understood clearly. The effects of kratom in the cases of fatalities are being investigated to see the extent of damage this drug can cause.

FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb, in a press release this Tuesday (6th of February 2018), said that this was a reinforcement of an earlier health advisory that was released last November. The earlier advisory stated that there was “clear data on the increasing harms associated” with kratom. This was because of the 36 deaths associated with kratom at the time. In this new statement Gottlieb said that the present death count is up to 44 deaths. He explained that the FDA has classified the substance as an opioid and this would require further “scientific analysis”. He said, “This new data adds to our body of substantial scientific evidence supporting our concerns about the safety and abuse potential of kratom… As the scientific data and adverse event reports have clearly revealed, compounds in kratom make it so it isn’t just a plant — it’s an opioid.”

Kratom is derived from a plant that grows in South east Asia. It is related to coffee and the leaves are used to make the drug. It is available at online portals and websites in the form of powder packaged within capsules or as tea. Kratom can act as a mood enhancer or as a sedative. Its effects as a stimulant or a sedative depend on the variety of the plant or on the dosage taken. It has been claimed to treat long term pain, depression and anxiety disorders effectively. It has also been used by heroin abusers who wish to step down from their addiction. It is being touted as a “non-opioid” alternative to traditional opioids. However, being an unregulated drug available for use and made by multiple manufacturers in a non-standardized manner, the quality of the drug is not assured as it its dosage, composition and packaging. This may lead to adulteration and overdosage on self-medication, says the FDA. The FDA warns that as of now the claims in favour of kratom have not been verified scientifically and the potential harms are known.

Gottlieb added in his statement that kraton has a potential for “abuse, addiction, and serious health consequences; including death.” The 36 death reports earlier, he said were reported in academic research, adverse event reports from Accident and Emergency Departments and from the reports of the Medical Examiners. Reports of the eight new cases are also to be rel;eased shortly, he said. These victims were all on multiple substances at the time of death he said. These were all illicit and harmful drugs. The teenager who hanged himself for example tested positive for kratom, alcohol and several other prescription drugs. Another person who feel out of a window under influence showed high blood levels of mitragynine. This is the main psychoactive substance that is present in kratom. Another middle aged man who died of overdose, was found to have opioids, benzodiazepines as well as kratom in his blood. Only one of the deaths was due to kratom alone states the FDA. Gottlieb said that this case was being investigated and also that it was not an absolute proof that kratom could be causing these deaths alone.

“Many of the cases received could not be fully assessed because of limited information provided,” Gottleib said, adding, “a few cases raise concern that kratom is being used in combination with other drugs.” “Cases of mixing kratom, other opioids, and other types of medication is extremely troubling because the activity of kratom at opioid receptors indicates there may be similar risks of combining kratom with certain drugs, just as there are with FDA-approved opioids,” Gottlieb said.

After this statement, kratom could be facing a ban under federal law say experts. FDA sent the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) an “8 factor analysis” to place the drug under a schedule and reduce its free availability and increase user awareness.

Tagged with:

About author

Related Articles