News

U.S. Surgeon General’s Advisory: Marijuana Use and the Developing Brain

Marijuana, or cannabis, is the most commonly used illicit drug in the United States. It acts by binding to cannabinoid receptors in the brain to produce a variety of effects, including euphoria, intoxication, and memory and motor impairments. These same cannabinoid receptors are also critical for brain development. They are part of the endocannabinoid system, which impacts the formation of brain circuits important for decision making, mood and responding to stress1.

To see complete statement, click here.

CDC Urges Clinicians to Report Possible Cases of Unexplained Vaping-associated Pulmonary Illness

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is encouraging clinicians to report cases of significant respiratory illness of unclear etiology and a history of vaping to the appropriate state and/or local health department.

According to the CDC, as of August 14, 2019, 30 cases of severe pulmonary disease have been reported to the Wisconsin Department of Health Services (DHS). Using a case definition drafted by DHS, 15 cases are confirmed (ages 16-34 years) and 15 cases are still under investigation (ages 16-53 years). Patients presented with respiratory symptoms including cough, shortness of breath, and fatigue. Symptoms worsened over a period of days or weeks before admission to the hospital. Other symptoms reported by some patients included fever, chest pain, weight loss, nausea, and diarrhea. Chest radiographs showed bilateral opacities, and CT imaging of the chest demonstrated diffuse ground-glass opacities, often with sub-pleural sparing. Evaluation for infectious etiologies was negative among nearly all patients.

Some patients experienced progressive respiratory compromise requiring mechanical ventilation but subsequently improved with corticosteroids. All patients reported “vaping” (i.e., use of e-cigarette devices to aerosolize substances for inhalation) in the weeks and months prior to hospital admission. Many have acknowledged recent use of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC)-containing products while speaking to healthcare personnel or in follow-up interviews by health department staff; however, no specific product has been identified by all cases, nor has any product been conclusively linked to this clinical syndrome. DHS is working with the Wisconsin State Lab of Hygiene and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to investigate the possible cause of these illnesses by testing patient specimens and vaping products.

For complete report click here.

Why vaping is so addictive, according to doctors

The decline in cigarette smoking is outstanding: An estimated 14% of American adults still smoke cigarettes, but that's down from 20.9% in 2005 and 24.7% in 1995. But as the use of traditional cigarettes slows down, another form of nicotine delivery rises. Hailed as a healthier alternative to cigarettes when they first appeared on the market back in the early 2000s, e-cigarettes (also called vaporizers like the Juul) may not be a stepping stone to quitting for good like many people once thought.

It's true that e-cigarettes don't contain many of the chemicals and substances found in traditional cigarettes (namely, tobacco), but they still contain the extremely addictive substance nicotine, which presents health risks of its own.

To read CNET article click here.

The link between pot and mass shootings may be closer than we think

You can’t walk through the streets of Manhattan these days without smelling weed.

Even as evidence mounts of the health problems associated with marijuana, New York has insisted on joining other greedy states scrambling to legalize this deceptively dangerous drug.

It makes no sense at a time when American youth is suffering from an unprecedented mental health crisis.

And, in all honesty, we cannot rule out a connection between increasing marijuana use, mental illness and the recent spate of mass shootings by disturbed young males.

We don’t yet know much about the mental state or drug use of the El Paso or Dayton killers. But a former girlfriend of Dayton killer Connor Betts, 24, has indicated he was mentally ill, and two of his friends interviewed by reporters this week mentioned his previous drug use.

To view the NY Post article, click here.

Proposition 64 Advisory Group

CCR is proud to announce that Joe Eberstein, Program Manager for the San Diego County Marijuana Prevention Initiative will be a member of the Proposition 64 Advisory group through the Dept. of Health Care Services. The purpose of the Prop 64 Advisory Group is to share emerging trends in youth substance use, make recommendations to DHCS on best practices for youth substance prevention, and provide feedback on YEPEITA-funded program assessment, implementation and evaluation.

For more information and meeting dates, click here.