Drug Czar Warns Against Taking “Bath Salts” Drugs

White House Drug Czar Gil Kerlikowske warns against taking the newest synthetic drugs, often marketed as “bath salts” and being sold legally on the Internet and in drug paraphernalia stores. The powdered drugs are sold under such brand names as “Ivory Wave” or “Purple Wave.” Kerlikowske said synthetic stimulants in them have made hundreds of users across the country sick already this year. The American Association of Poison Control Centers has received 251 calls related to “bath salts” so far this year, compared to 236 such calls to poison centers during all of 2010. These stimulants can cause chest pains, increased blood pressure and heart rate, agitation, hallucinations, extreme paranoia and delusions – as the drugs mimic the effects of cocaine, ecstasy, and LSD. The “bath salts” drugs, also sometimes labeled as plant food, contain the synthetic stimulants MDPV, or 3,4- methylenedioxypyrovalerone, and mephedrone. Those chemicals are neither controlled by the Drug Enforcement Administration nor approved for human consumption by the Food and Drug Administration. Hawaii , Michigan , Louisiana , Kentucky , and North Dakota are considering legislation to ban the products. Several counties, cities, and local municipalities have also taken action to ban these products.
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