All 3 of the deaths associated with synthetic cannabinoids were men, 2 in their 20s and 1 in his 40s. Those sickened have reported blood in the urine, severe bloody noses, bleeding gums and internal bleeding. A number of the 107 people who experienced bleeding tested positive for brodifacoum, a lethal anticoagulant often found in rat poison.
The number was 56 cases a week ago.
Advocate Eureka Hospital in Eureka has had two patients with bleeding after using synthetic cannabinoids since Friday and both were treated and released, spokesman Eric Alvin said. While efforts are underway to get the contaminated drugs out of circulation, it's possible they could re-emerge.
Their state health department reports that at least 9-5 people statewide are becoming sick since early March soon after eating synthetic bud.
Since the Governor announced the crackdown in 2016, State Police have made 13 arrests, seized more than 1,100 packets of synthetic marijuana, and one three-pound bulk seizure.
What the state health department says it's struggling with most is getting potential users information on how risky these drugs can be. Other health effects caused by synthetic cannabinoids can include breathing problems, gastrointestinal problems, heart attacks, hypertension, kidney failure, muscle damage, and strokes. The "fake week" can be found in convenience stores, gas stations, head shops, novelty stores across IL and the nation, as well as on the internet.
Federal officials say the synthetic cannabinoids were packaged in sealed containers and labeled with such names as "Matrix", "Blue Giant" and "Crazy Monkey".
Anyone who has a reaction to synthetic cannabinoids, such as severe bleeding, should call 911 or have someone take them to the emergency department immediately.
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