TL neuro

March 29, 2013

Poison Control Calls for Bath Salts and Cannabimimetic Drugs

Filed under: 4-MMC/Mephedrone, Cannabimimetics, Cannabis, Cathinones, MDPV — mtaffe @ 11:38 am

A new paper reviews calls to the American Association of Poison Control Centers:

Wood, K.E. Exposure to Bath Salts and Synthetic Tetrahydrocannabinol from 2009 to 2012 in the United States. J Pediatr. 2013 Feb 4. pii:S0022-3476(12)01545-4. doi: 10.1016/j.jpeds.2012.12.056. [ PubMed ]

ImageThe data included single-substance exposures with “closed cases”. So called “informational calls” were excluded from the analysis. The authors report that synthetic cannabinoid calls first appeared in 2009 and peaked in July of 2011, bath salts exposures appeared in 2010 and peaked in June of 2011. The most recent months are presented in Figure 1 which I’ve reproduced here.

The paper then goes on to do a breakdown by state but these are not presented by population, just by total calls, so it is hard to get an appreciation for whether any particular region or state is experiencing greater numbers of calls to poison control.

These data are interesting to follow over time, particularly in combination with studies of the self-reported use such as Monitoring the Future or the National Survey on Drug Use and Health (see links on sidebar).

It may be the  case that Poison Center calls go in close registration with use. If so these data might suggest that bathsalts popularity has diminished. It also could be that calls go in combination with a relative dearth of information- as more information emerges, recreational users may decrease calling poison control because they know better what to expect in cases of unusual or concerning reaction to drug. The call rates may also reflect perceptions of legal consequences and experience variability depending on local (State level) restrictions on these drugs.

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