It’s so difficult to be happy when my 19-year-old daughter is succumbing to using illicit drugs; I pray and wish she’d stop using but with this new drug culture in our country. This culture is trying to normalize recreational drugs such as marijuana which makes it difficult for her to stop.
This is a picture from a drug dealer on Instagram; they sell to people on social media; does this look natural to you? It’s today’s crack weed marijuana and THC levels are extreme.
I was able to snap this picture from my daughter’s Instagram of someone she follows. This is not natural. I oppose ever legalizing marijuana because it’s causing mental illness and breaking apart families; that’s the real drug war.
I feel like a failure as a parent; I couldn’t protect her from drugs because society is influencing her. Please, other parents, please be warned about the drugs and drug dealers, and what they are doing to your kids. Watch out for crack weed.
By Patricia Silva-Duran
Editor’s Note: Alternative names are “wax,” budder,” “rosin,” “earwax” “710,” “shatter” and more. Search for our other articles on dabbing for a better understanding.
The 25-year Christchurch Longitudinal Study demonstrated that in 86% of cases of those who had taken two or more illegal drugs, marijuana had been the drug the study subjects had taken first. The correlation is in the mathematics and can’t be denied.
The researchers concluded that the use of marijuana in late adolescence and early adulthood had emerged as the strongest risk factor for later involvement in other illicit drug use.
New research has been released that adds to these findings. Researchers at the University of Bristol in the UK has found regular and occasional cannabis use as a teen is associated with a greater risk of other illicit drug taking in early adulthood.
The study by Bristol’s Population Health Science Institute, published online in the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health in 2017, caught the attention of most major newspapers in the UK. It was reviewed in the British Medical Journal and Science Daily in June of 2017. But, once again, the news was under-reported in the North American media.
Cannabis Use Predicts Many Forms of Problematic Substance Use in Adulthood
Using data from the Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children (ALSPAC), the researchers looked at levels of cannabis use during adolescence to determine whether these might predict other problematic substance misuse in early childhood – by the age of 21.
In addition to the findings on pot and illicit drug use, the study found that early cannabis use was associated with harmful drinking and smoking.
The lead author of the study, Dr. Michelle Taylor from the School of Social and Community Medicine told the UK media: “I think the most important findings from this study are that one in five adolescents follow a pattern of occasional or regular cannabis use and that those individuals are more likely to be tobacco-dependent, have harmful levels of alcohol consumption or use other, illicit drugs in early adulthood.”
Spearman’s Rank Correlation Coefficient:
Now for all those that are still question the Gateway Theory or are willing to dismiss the evidence from these studies here is the Statistical Mathematical Evidence of Correlation:
A survey that was conducted in Canada and 9 other countries was used to determine the percentage of teenagers who had used marijuana and other drugs.
Using Spearman’s Rank Correlation Coefficient to test the correlation between the two variables as extracted from the population as pairs of sets of data, it was mathematically demonstrated that there is a positive correlation between the two variables.
The claim that there is a positive correlation between smoking marijuana and doing other drugs is made with at least a 95% level of confidence by mathematical calculation.
If after this evidence you still cling to the position that the Gateway Theory is old-school and can be cast aside, you are being asked for your evidence, your proof and your calculations.
by Pamela McColl, SAM Canada
“Legalization would result only in more cannabis users and thus a higher secondary demand for and entanglement within the remaining illegal drug market,” wrote David Sergeant of The Bow Group, London, England.
by Brad Roberts, MD: I recently finished my residency in emergency medicine and began to practice in Pueblo, Colorado. I grew up there, and I was excited to return home. However, when I returned home, the Pueblo I once knew had drastically changed. (Above photo is of people lining up at the opening of a pot dispensary in 2014.)
Where there were once hardware stores, animal feed shops, and homes along dotted farms, I now find marijuana shops—and lots of them. As of January 2016, there were 424 retail marijuana stores in Colorado compared with 202 McDonald’s restaurants.1 These stores are not selling the marijuana I had seen in high school.
Multiple different types of patients are coming into the emergency department with a variety of unexpected problems such as marijuana-induced psychosis, dependence, burn injuries, increased abuse of other drugs, increased homelessness and its associated problems, and self-medication with marijuana to treat their medical problems instead of seeking appropriate medical care.
I had expected to see more patients with cannabinoid hyperemesis syndrome (and I have), but they were the least of my concern. Our local homeless shelter reported seeing 5,486 (unique) people between January and July 2016, while for the entire year of 2013 (before recreational marijuana) that number had been 2,444 people.2
Most disturbing, we weren’t seeing just homeless adults but entire families. It is a relatively common occurrence to have patients who just moved here for the marijuana show up to the emergency department with multiple medical problems, without any of their medications, often with poor or nonexistent housing, and with no plan for medical care other than to use marijuana.
They have often left established medical care and support to move here for marijuana and show up to the emergency department, often with suitcase in hand.
Increasingly Potent & Dangerous Drug
This new commercialized marijuana is near 20 percent tetrahydrocannabinol (THC, the psychoactive component of cannabis), while the marijuana of the 1980s was less than 2 percent THC.
This tenfold increase in potency doesn’t include other formulations such as oils, “shatter” (highly concentrated solidified THC), or “dabbing” (heated shatter that is inhaled to get an even more potent form) that have up to 80 or 90 percent THC.3
The greatest concern that I have is the confusion between medical and recreational marijuana. Patients are being diagnosed and treated from the marijuana shops by those without any medical training. I have had patients bring in bottles with a recommended strain of cannabis and frequency of use for a stated medical problem given at the recommendation of a marijuana shop employee.
My colleagues report similar encounters, with one reporting seeing two separate patients with significantly altered sensorium and with bottles labeled 60 percent THC. They were taking this with opioids and benzodiazepines.
In some cases, places outside of medical clinics, like local marijuana shops, are being used to give screening examinations for medical marijuana cards.4 Reportedly, no records are available from these visits when requested by other medical providers. A large number of things treated with marijuana, often with no cited research at all or with severe misinterpretation of research, are advertised online.
These include statements that marijuana treats cancer (numerous types), cystic fibrosis, both diarrhea and constipation, hypoglycemia, nightmares, writer’s cramp, and numerous other conditions.5–7
Although there are likely some very effective ways to use the cannabinoid receptor (probably better termed the anandamide receptor), putting shops on every street corner and having nonmedical personnel giving medical advice is a very poor way to use this as a medicine.
Furthermore, to suggest that combustion (smoking) be the preferred route of medication delivery is harmful.3,8–10 I am also concerned that this is being widely distributed and utilized as a medicine prior to safety and efficacy studies having been completed; widely varying dosing regimens, concentrations, and formulations are being developed, sold, and utilized.
Patients are not being informed of the adverse effects associated with marijuana use, but instead, they are being told, “There are no adverse effects.” I am in favor of using the anandamide receptor for treatment purposes. However, we should do this safely and appropriately. What is occurring now is neither safe nor appropriate.
There are numerous adverse effects of marijuana that are significant. Marijuana use may lead to irreversible changes in the brain.3,9,11,12 Marijuana use correlates with adverse social outcomes.3
It is strongly associated with the development of schizophrenia.13–16 Dependence can lead to problem use.17,18 There are adverse effects on cardiovascular function, and smoking leads to poor respiratory outcomes.3,19,20 Traffic fatalities associated with marijuana have increased in Colorado.1
Pregnant women are using marijuana, which may lead to adverse effects on the fetus, and pediatric exposures are a much more common occurrence.21,22
Different Approach Is Needed
We should approach mass marijuana production and distribution as we would any other large-scale public health problem. We should do what we can to limit exposure, and we should provide clear, unbiased education.
In the case of prevention efforts being unsuccessful, we need to provide immediate treatment and assistance in stopping use. If we are going to use this as a medication, then we should use it as we use other medications. It should have to undergo the same scrutiny, Food and Drug Administration approval, and regulation that any other medication does. Why are we allowing a pass on a medication that very likely would carry with it a black-box warning?
As emergency physicians, we are on the front lines. We treat affected patients; we need to be at the forefront of public policy recommendations at both state and national levels.
Originally published by ACEPNow, a journal of Emergency Medicine. We also published the testimony of another emergency doctor in Pueblo, Dr. Karen Randall.
Parents Opposed to Pot calls on the Press to be more transparent in reporting the dangers and damage of marijuana.
Shortly after the Times Square incident, in which the driver was high on marijuana, German Lopez of Vox wrote an article calling for more attention to be focused on drunk driving. One 18-year-old woman died and 22 more people were injured on May 18. It was a terrifying incident, and the driver acted like a madman. He was later sorry for the incident. (Photo above is from CNN)
NBC Nightly News with Lester Holt correctly reported that the driver admitted to smoking marijuana before driving.
Toxicology reports said the driver tested negative for alcohol, but positive for drugs. Some news sources suggested he was high on marijuana laced with PCP. Other news sources said he “smoked” something, “synthetic marijuana” or K2 Spice, or just PCP.
When there are psychotic rants and when “demons” or “voices” tell a person to do it, it’s more often drugged than drunken behavior. Marijuana, particularly the super strong strains available today, is a drug likely to do that to someone.
Vox later corrected the story to say drugs, not alcohol caused the accident. Vox never admitted that that marijuana was the drug. When will there be a follow-up article, listing a litany of problems caused by driving under the influence of marijuana or drugs? MRC reports that German Lopez has written more than 30 articles in favor of marijuana.
The website Lopez works for, Vox, puts up strange video with simplistic statements about marijuana. However, it starts with the supposition that Congress had no business making marijuana a Schedule I drug. Narrator Ezra Klein uses the slick film compare marijuana to alcohol. Yes, alcohol is dangerous and brings out anger and can cause toxic overdose. But the risky behaviors from pot are very different.
Vox should remove this video from the Internet and apologize for posting misleading information. There are certainly people who will drive impaired after having seen the video. The severe mental health risks of using marijuana for a short period of time are not a parallel with alcohol use.
Other Cases of Marijuana Psychosis
About five years ago, a man was eating the face of a homeless man in Florida. Reporters thought the man was under the influence of Bath Salts. However, tests showed that he only had marijuana in his system.
On May 9, a man high on marijuana was going 100 mph and killed another man in Nevada. The driver denies that he was responsible but says car was taken over by demons.
Also in Nevada, Lekeisha Holloway, a woman from Oregon who drove into a crowd in Las Vegas, was high on marijuana at the time.
Impairment by marijuana is much more likely to bring out the crazy, psychotic rants like happened on Times Square or in the MAX train in Portland. Impairment by pot also caused one of the most dangerous train crashes in American history in 1988. Fourteen people died when both the Conrail engineer and his brakeman were stoned.
Press Ignores Truth
Why does much of the Press, including Voxdotcom, think that wisdom from past experience is irrelevant? If some Vox and other news sources don’t stop the exaggerations about pot, they will lose all credibility for reporting on other issues.
Ariana Huffington was made part of the Honorary Board of Drug Policy Alliance, a reason that news service publishes many pro-pot articles. Readers need to be skeptical of anything that Christopher Ingraham of the Washington Post writes about marijuana, as he is very biased. He used to work for the Brookings Institution which gave up its independent stance in order to take money from Peter Lewis. Lewis’ money was earmarked to support legalization of marijuana.
It could be that newspapers are hoping that marijuana businesses could bring in new sources of advertising money and boost their bottom lines. However, there’s recent news that The Cannabist at the Denver Post had to lay off its ad sales staff.
Why is there such fear in bringing up the truth about marijuana which can lead to psychosis in some individuals? Reactions to marijuana vary from person to person. They also vary from how much, how strong the pot is and how young the person is when they start using the drug. Today’s pot is extremely strong and people who tolerated pot 30 years ago may have great difficulty withstanding the pot of today.