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Meds The truth behind the first marijuana overdose death


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Staff member
UN Drug Office can’t find a single cannabis drug death, despite it being most widely-consumed drug on the planet
Cannabis is also the world's most widely cultivated drug, the most confiscated and the most likely to land a user in treatment

The United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) has released its 2017 World Drug Report, covering 2015 statistics from around the world. The report finds that cannabis is the most consumed, most widely cultivated and most confiscated drug the office tracks.

Despite leading in all of these categories, UNODC reported zero fatal marijuana overdoses in 2015, unchanged from 2014.

Here’s a look at some of the intriguing stats in the report:

The report states that cannabis is the planet’s most widely consumed drug, with an estimate of 3.8 percent of the adult population using it in 2015. This translates to an estimated 183 million people (with a lower range on the estimate of 128 million and an upper range of 238 million). Other drugs tracked in decreasing order of use include opioids (upper limit of .88% of population), opiates, cocaine, amphetamines and ecstasy. 39 percent of individuals reported in treatment for “drug disorder” are being treated for cannabis.

Prevalence of use varies by country.

The report dives deep into changing laws in the United States for recreational and medical marijuana. The UNODC report cites data from the National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH) for use trends. NSDUH noted an increase of past-month marijuana use for the population age 12 and older, from 6.2 percent in 2002 to 8.3 percent in 2015. According to NSDUH, in 2015 an estimated 22 million Americans age 12 and older used marijuana in the past month.

The report states that in the European Union, about 6.6 percent of people age 15-64 used cannabis in 2015. On the younger side of the demographic, those age 15-34 use at a higher rate of 13.3 percent. Around 3 million adults (1 percent) in the European Union are estimated to be daily or near-daily cannabis users, 70 percent of whom are between 15 and 34 years old and mostly male. In the countries that allow medical cannabis use, past-month, non-medical use of cannabis increased significantly among the population aged 26 years and older, from 5.8 percent to 7.2 percent over the period 2004-2013. However, among the younger age groups (12-17 years and 18-25 years), changes in the prevalence of non-medical cannabis use were not statistically significant and not considered to be related to the measures that allow the use of cannabis for medical purposes.

Cultivation and seizure
The report also found that cannabis is the most widely “illicitly produced” drug worldwide. From 2010-2015, UNODC tracked reports of cultivation of cannabis by 135 countries. For contrast, 49 countries reported cultivation of opium poppy (the source of heroin) and only eight countries reported coca bush (the source of cocaine).

Cannabis seizures were reported in 164 of 168 countries.

For cannabis, in terms of number of plants grown and “eradicated,” there’s a reason it’s called “weed.” In single years reported ranging from 2011-2015, Paraguay eradicated 12,122,750 plants; Ukraine: 7,550,000; Peru: 6,200,578; Tajikistan: 2,180,121; Costa Rica: 1,727,175; Netherlands: 1,600,000; Brazil: 1,364,316; and Jamaica: 1,053,000.


In this file photo taken in August 2015, masked Albanian police officers burn cannabis plants in Kurvelesh commune. The number of plants “eradicated” by officials around the world is one of the interesting stats in the latest UN World Drug report. (Hektor Pustina, Associated Press file)
The United States doesn’t give stats on plant counts but reported that it had eradicated 396,620 indoor sites and 3,904,213 outdoor sites. At a conservative estimate of 10 plants per site, that would be 43,008,330 plants that did not make it to anyone’s pipe bowl.

For opium, the report’s best estimate was 304,800 hectares grown (1,177 square miles) around the world, and for coca, 156,500 hectares (604 square miles), with 97,560 hectares reported eradicated (+45,266 plants in Ecuador).

6,000 tons of cannabis herb and 1,300 tons of cannabis resin were seized annually around the world. More than half of all drug seizures (53 percent) were of cannabis (35 percent flower, 13 percent resin, 3 percent plants, 2 percent other).

Globally, UNODC estimates that there were 190,900 drug-related deaths in 2015, (lower limit 115,900 to upper limit 230,100). The report notes that “this is most likely an underestimate.” North America accounts for more than 25 percent of drug-related deaths.

The report notes:

Mostly driven by opioids, overdose deaths more than tripled in the period 1999-2015 and increased by 11.4 percent in the past year alone, to reach the highest level ever recorded. Of the 52,000 total drug-related deaths reported for the United States, those related to opioids accounted for more than 60 percent. In 2015, the death rate from synthetic opioids, increased by 72 percent compared with the previous year, whereas heroin overdose deaths increased by 23 percent over the same period.

While the UNODC noted that cannabis was involved in 16 percent of drug-related emergency room visits in Europe, the organization had no statistics to report on deaths caused by cannabis. The report did list a statistic for cannabis in “healthy years of life lost,” at the lowest rate among any drugs listed.


(UN Office on Drugs and Crime, World Drug Report 2017)


(UN Office on Drugs and Crime, World Drug Report 2017)
Rumor control central...after headlines trumpeting the first MJ death, the Dr's in question are backing the fuck up as fast as they can. Key quotes:

We are absolutely not saying that marijuana killed that child,” said Thomas Nappe, an author of the report

Nappe emphasized that the word “associated” should not be interpreted as indicating a cause and effect"

Well, we will be hearing from that asshat at SAM and ole' Jeffe soon about how MJ kills people...because it ain't about facts, its about them being self-appointed defenders of the faith. sigh

The truth behind the ‘first marijuana overdose death’

A case report about the seizure and death of an 11-month old after exposure to cannabis has prompted headlines about “the first marijuana overdose death” this week.

Except that’s not what the doctors meant.

“We are absolutely not saying that marijuana killed that child,” said Thomas Nappe, an author of the report who is now the director of medical toxicology at St. Luke’s University Health Network in Bethlehem, Pa.

Nappe, who co-authored the report with Christopher Hoyte, explained that the doctors simply observed this unusual sequence of events, documented it and alerted the medical community that it is worth studying a possible relationship between cannabis and the child’s cause of death, myocarditis, or inflammation of the heart muscle.

Their observations appeared in the August edition of the journal Clinical Practice and Cases in Emergency Medicine as a case report, which is significantly different from a scientific study or research report that can be used to establish a causal relationship.

A spokesman for Denver Health wrote in an email that Hoyte would not be available for an interview late Thursday.

The report states that the child experienced an “unstable motel-living situation” and the parents admitted to drug possessions, including cannabis. Nappe said the authors urge parents to be vigilant and keep cannabis out of reach of children.

The report recommends: “In states where cannabis is legalized, it is important that physicians not only counsel parents on preventing exposure to cannabis, but to also consider cannabis toxicity in unexplained pediatric myocarditis and cardiac deaths as a basis for urine drug screening in this setting.”

The authors added that,” As of this writing, this is the first reported pediatric death associated with cannabis exposure.”

Nappe emphasized that the word “associated” should not be interpreted as indicating a cause and effect.

Drug policy and health experts also warned against making too much of the report.

“You just can’t make those statements because then what happens is lay people say, ‘Oh my God, did you hear a kid died from marijuana poisoning?’ and it can be sensationalized,” said Noah Kaufman, a Northern Colorado emergency room physician.

“It’s not based on reality. It’s based on somebody kind of jumping the gun and making a conclusion, and scientifically you can’t do that.”

Turns out, that’s what happened in previous news reports, much to Nappe’s dismay. Upon hearing that Nappe and Hoyte were not claiming that the child died from marijuana, Kaufman said “that’s more responsible.”

Jonathan Caulkins, a professor at Carnegie Mellon University's Heinz College, said that it doesn’t strike him as impossible that the death described in the report could be linked to marijuana.

“Unambiguously, cannabis can accelerate the heart,” said Caulkins, who is not a medical doctor but studies drug policy and markets. He also agreed that parents should keep marijuana out of reach of their children.

Millions of Americans use marijuana regularly, according to the most recent National Survey on Drug Use and Health, and addiction treatment researcher Keith Humphreys said cannabis consumption has “virtually no risk.”

The Drug Enforcement Administration states that there have been no reported overdose deaths from marijuana.
"To which all a concerned citizen can say is: no shit." :rofl:

Nope, Still No Such Thing as a Fatal Marijuana Overdose


Photo by BNPS

By all accounts, 31-year-old mother of three Gemma Moss recently smoked half a joint to help her sleep, and then she never woke up: a tragic passing that quickly yielded giddy tabloid headlines touting her as “the first woman in Britain to be poisoned to death by cannabis.”

As though some incredible sports record had just been achieved.

And really, the headlines could have gone even further, proclaiming poor Ms. Moss “the first person in recorded history to die of a marijuana overdose!” Which, given the fact that humans have been ingesting the plant in one form or another for more than 10,000 years, certainly sounds like a scoop. Especially when science had previously pegged the dose you'd need to ingest in order to suffer a fatal overdose at considerably higher than half a joint.

According to a 1988 ruling from US Drug Enforcement Agency administrative law judge Francis Young:

Drugs used in medicine are routinely given what is called an LD-50. The LD-50 rating indicates at what dosage fifty percent of test animals receiving a drug will die as a result of drug induced toxicity. A number of researchers have attempted to determine marijuana’s LD-50 rating in test animals, without success. Simply stated, researchers have been unable to give animals enough marijuana to induce death.

At present it is estimated that marijuana’s LD-50 is around 1:20,000 or 1:40,000. In layman terms this means that in order to induce death a marijuana smoker would have to consume 20,000 to 40,000 times as much marijuana as is contained in one marijuana cigarette.... A smoker would theoretically have to consume nearly 1,500 pounds of marijuana within about 15 minutes to induce a lethal response.

So if the rather notably anti-marijuana DEA considers fatally overdosing on chronic nigh well impossible, and if even the world's most rabid drug warriors can't point to a single previous medically confirmed OD, how the heck did we end up with last week's definitive headlines? Is it possible that Gemma Ross rolled up a 3,000-pound joint and then consumed half of it in one sitting?

Well, the British press didn't report on the exact size of her spliff, but it's hard to imagine they make rolling papers that large. No, instead these breathlessly reported stories all relied on the wisdom of one small-town coroner and a local pathologist who share a perhaps less than fully evolved understanding of how marijuana effects the human body.

“The postmortem could find no natural cause for her death"—Sheriff Payne, coroner of Bournemouth, England, wrote in his postmortem—“with the balance of probability that it is more likely than not that she died from the effects of cannabis.”

To which attending pathologist Dr. Kudair Hussein added: "The physical examination and the examination of various organs, including the heart and the liver, showed no abnormality that could account for her death. The level of canabinoids in the blood were 0.1 to 0.15 miligrams per liter; this is considered as moderate to heavy cannabis use. I looked through literature, and it's well known that cannabis is of very low toxicity. But there are reports which say cannabis can be considered as a cause of death because it can induce a cardiac arrest."

So did they list the cause of death as “cardiac arrest?”

No, because as clearly stated, there's absolutely no evidence to demonstrate that.

Did they list the cause of death as “cannabis poisoning,” as widely reported in newspaper stories that quickly went viral?

No, because as they clearly stated, there's absolutely no evidence to demonstrate that. And there's much evidence showing such “poisoning” to be scientifically impossible.

Instead they concluded the cause of death to be “cannabis abuse.” Again, absolutely no evidence to prove this, but since the authorities couldn't come up with anything else to explain a seemingly healthy woman dying in her sleep, why not blame the reefer?

Of course, needless to say, not all of the experts agreed.

“There’s been no history of any verified reports of a death from cannabis ever,” Dr. Alan Shackelford, a Harvard-trained physician and leading medical marijuana advocate in Colorado told the Denver Post. “Cannabis can cause an increased heart rate, and there’s a possibility that it could cause a problem with someone with a pre-existing heart disease—for example, somebody with an elevated heart rate. But there’s no known dose of cannabis that could kill a human... We see unexplained deaths not infrequently. [In this case] the cannabis is a red herring and an incidental finding... I have no idea what caused her death, but I can say with near 100-percent certainty that it wasn’t the cannabis that killed her.”

Meanwhile, David Nutt, former chairman of the British government's Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs, doesn't entirely discount the chance that cannabis had some small role in Ms. Moss's untimely expiration, but he says that such a “freak fatality” shouldn't change the way we think about the plant's incredible safety record.

“I cannot begin to understand the pathologist’s certainty that cannabis killed Gemma Moss, but neither do I wish to contradict him outright,” Nutt wrote on the blog of his Independent Scientific Committee on Drugs. “Taking any amount of cannabis, like all drugs, like so many activities, puts some stresses on the body. Cannabis usually makes the heart work a little harder and subtly affects its rate and rhythm. Any minor stress on the body can be the straw that breaks the camel’s back, the butterfly’s wingbeat that triggers the storm. Ms. Moss had suffered with depression, which itself increases the risk of sudden cardiac death. It is quite plausible that the additional small stress caused by that cannabis joint triggered a one-in-a-million cardiac event, just as has been more frequently recorded from sport, sex, saunas and even straining on the toilet.”

To which all a concerned citizen can say is: no shit.
Nothing ’plausible’ about any of this. It’s just “plausible deniability” in British accent, with the notion of plausibility stretched to the breaking point. Warriors of the Status Quo Ante.
I was a corporate goon for many year's however was a hippy in my youth!
As a old person now I find CANNABIS 2 be harmless?

It is so natural?

Don't make it political!
A smoker would theoretically have to consume nearly 1,500 pounds of marijuana within about 15 minutes to induce a lethal response.
Unless you already had high tolerance, I would probably just chuck a whitey.:tongue:
So well over half a metric ton in 15 minutes, nice stat to know.
Unless you already had high tolerance, I would probably just chuck a whitey.:tongue:
So well over half a metric ton in 15 minutes, nice stat to know.
I have ROSIN’s I am sporting!
Term from marlin finishing in SEA OF CORTEZ!
Please forgive my behavior?
Can’t drink these daze?
CANNABIS is more mild and better for you?
Thank for introducing and nice plug-in vaporizer?

LEMON HAZE rosin is kine SATIVA (not horrible?)
BANNANA x STRAWBERRY rosin is kine INDICA (couching strain?)
PINEAPPLE x ORANGE rosin is kine HYBRID (hyperbole)

KOBE died?
He will be missed!
Went to the OUTDOOR MALL with my beautiful wife.
So fun to shop with her?
Alway thought it wasn’t kool?
It’s fun actually!

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