JACKSON, Miss.- More than 30 people have been put in the hospital since Thursday for “spice” overdose or complications from the synthetic drug just in the Jackson metro area alone, hospital officials said.
“Typically these patients are relatively young, in their 20’s and 30’s and presenting with a lot of agitation, hallucination, sweating.” Dr. Alan Jones, Chairman of Emergency Medicine at UMMC said, “Many of these patients are particularly ill. We’ve had some that have been comatose requiring critical care.”
Jones says the derivative of spices is causing muscle breakdown and kidney problems in more than half of the patients.
There are reports of similar cases coming in from Meridian and Philadelphia too.
“Spice has potentially up to five different components deemed illegal by the FDA. It’s a synthetic marijuana made with plant products and many additives that can be different depending on who manufactures the drug,” said Jones.
The synthetic drug is suspected to be the cause of one death in Jackson. That person died before making it to the hospital, authorities said.
Doctors said it’s dangerous because its potency can be 100 times greater than the active ingredient in marijuana.
State epidemiologist Dr. Thomas Dobbs urged people not to take spice.
Dobbs says, “These drugs are not regulated, not controlled. There is no way that these can be safe under any circumstance.”