Kratom, an herbal supplement, has gained popularity in recent years for its alleged therapeutic effects. However, as its usage has surged, so has concern about the potential dangers associated with it. The experienced personal injury attorneys at Meyers & Flowers are investigating Kratom. This controversial herbal remedy has been linked to a series of alleged injuries and deaths and may pose a significant danger to those who have used it for its claimed health benefits.
What is Kratom?
Originating from Southeast Asia, Mitragyna speciosa, commonly known as kratom, has gained attention for its narcotic and stimulant-like effects when its leaves are ingested. Kratom is often used to self-treat conditions such as pain, coughing, diarrhea, anxiety and depression, opioid use disorder, and opioid withdrawal.
According to U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), kratom products are available in the U.S. through sales on the Internet and at brick-and-mortar stores. An estimated 1.7 million Americans aged 12 and older used kratom in 2021, according to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s National Survey on Drug Use and Health.
FDA's Stance on Kratom:
The FDA has not approved kratom for any medical use, citing a lack of scientific evidence to support its safety and efficacy. The agency has raised several concerns about the supplement, including:
- Risk of Addiction: Kratom contains compounds that can activate opioid receptors in the brain, leading to addiction and physical dependence.
- Adverse Effects: Reports of adverse events associated with kratom use include seizures, liver damage, and withdrawal symptoms.
- Contamination: The FDA has found high levels of heavy metals, including lead and nickel, in some kratom products, posing additional health risks.
- Unregulated Production: Kratom is often produced and sold without adequate quality controls, leading to variations in potency and purity.
Adverse Reactions and Injuries:
Other reported side effects encompass respiratory depression, nervousness, agitation, aggression, sleeplessness, hallucinations, delusion, tremors, loss of libido, constipation, nausea, and vomiting. The variability in product quality and dosage, compounded by the lack of standardized production practices, makes it challenging for users to predict and control the potential side effects.
Kratom-Related Injuries and Fatalities
Reports from poison control centers and the CDC indicate that Kratom was associated with 91 overdoses between July 2016 and December 2017. Alarming data from the CDC has linked Kratom to over 150 reported fatalities, resulting in a surge of wrongful death lawsuits. The first Kratom-related wrongful death trial in the U.S. recently concluded with a $2.5 million judgment.
How Meyers & Flowers Can Help
If you or a loved one believe you have been harmed by Kratom, contact our experienced product liability team to get the help you deserve. At Meyers & Flowers, our track record of large resolutions for victims of dangerous drugs is a testament to the representation you will receive. With no fees, unless we win, contact us today for a free case evaluation at (630)576-9696, [email protected], or on our website.