Teens are vaping fentanyl, Rocky Mountain poison center warns

 Rocky Mountain Poison Center is issuing a warning for parents following a recent cluster of adolescents overdosing on opioids. 

“One of the things we have noticed recently is we have gotten a fair number of calls to our poison center for young people, adolescents, who have been experimenting with vaping fentanyl,” Dr. Christopher Hoyte said.

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2021 San Diego County Marijuana Prevention Initiative Report

California voters passed Proposition 64, The Adult Use of Marijuana Act, on November 4, 2016, legalizing the adult use and possession of marijuana. Retail sales of marijuana products began in 2018. The San Diego County Marijuana Prevention Initiative (MPI) published an initial report in early 2016 and a subsequent report in 2020. Previous reports included local marijuana-related trends to assess baseline data and identify important public health issues. This new report presents trends and public health data related to youth marijuana use and documents changes observed following legalization.

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MPI Drug Interactions Info Cards (English and Spanish)

The MPI most recently formed a partnership with local doctors and pharmacies to provide education to the community on potential drug interactions between marijuana and medications (both prescribed and over the counter). Seventeen local pharmacies are participating in the consumer protections project and are distributing informational resources to patients receiving prescriptions. Preliminary data from the program shows high levels of interest from patients to receive information on potential adverse effects.

For access to info cards click here.

Marijuana poisonings among children are rising in areas where drug is legal

However, newly published data shows Ontario is still seeing nine times more ER visits for cannabis poisonings in young children. A third of those cases required further hospitalization, and in 4% of those cases, children were admitted to the ICU.

"The industry has evolved to have much stronger, more potent products and these edible products are no exception," said Dr. Sam Wang, a pediatric ER physician at Children's Hospital Colorado. "Kids can get into a lot of THC in these products, and so they can have more profound symptoms, including sedation, coma. We've seen kids with low oxygen because their breathing is low."

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High Truths Season Finale

This High Truths finale is dedicated to you and to answering your questions. Click here to access.

The CDC announced that our predicted 12-month overdose rate has exceeded 100,000 people. That’s like an airplane a day falling out of the sky. More people 18 to 45 year old died of fentanyl then died of COVID. And while fentanyl is the driver of deaths, I have not met a single patient that used fentanyl that did not start out priming their brain at a young age with marijuana. Not one.

Listen to our esteemed experts as they share High Truths Highlights of 2021 and Hopes for 2022.

Dr. Bertha Madras is a professor of psychobiology at Harvard Medical School and former Deputy Director for Demand Reduction at the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy, ONDCP. She has numerous scientific publications, courses, patents, and awards. I followed Dr. Madras’s service at ONDCP and she has been an invaluable mentor.

Dr. Ken Finn practices pain medicine in Colorado, he is the editor of the first medical textbook on Cannabis in Medicine, is President of the American Board of Pain Medicine, and is my colleague as Vice President of IASIC, the International Academy on the Science and Impact of Cannabis.

Joe Eberstein is a certified prevention specialist and member of SAMHSA region 9 Prevention Technology Transfer Center. He is the program manager for the San Diego Marijuana Prevention Initiative and is my colleague at CCR, Center for Community Research.