Published: Thu, February 22, 2018
Medical | By Josefina Yates

Germs invade supplements, Kratom in Salmonella

Germs invade supplements, Kratom in Salmonella

The Centers of Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) declared that a novel outburst of Salmonella hitched to Kratom. In October 2016, the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) was poised to criminalize use of the plant, but it backed away from that position after facing Congressional opposition and a social media storm. Some consumers have hailed the drug as a "natural" pain remedy, but some medical experts say it can be unsafe, even deadly. Eight (73%) of 11 people interviewed reported consuming kratom in pills, powder, or tea.

"At this time, CDC recommends that people not consume kratom in any form because it could be contaminated with Salmonella", the CDC advised in its bulletin. The agency also began taking action to prevent dietary supplements containing kratom from entering the US. No deaths have been reported thus far. Gottlieb compared the substance mixes of kratom to opioids. It issued a public health advisory in November about health risks of the herbal supplement.

While the supplements had been meant to be used to help people with weight loss, there have been reports of people using them as an alternative to prescription opioids. The vast majority contaminated with salmonella create indications - including loose bowels, fever and stomach spasms - inside 12 to 72 hours of presentation to the microscopic organisms.

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Kratom plants are native to Malaysia, whose leaves have traditionally been used in tea for treating pain.

FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb also urged manufacturers to stop selling products intended for human consumption if they contain kratom.

Earlier this month, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced that it had found evidence of opioid compounds in kratom, and said that its own investigation, taken together with other chemical studies 'have clearly revealed, compounds in kratom make it so it isn't just a plant - it's an opioid'. Since then, the FDA has been making efforts to better understand kratom's safety profile. "There are three FDA-approved products that are safe and effective for the treatment of opioid use disorder and we encourage patients to seek advice from their health care professional and pursue treatment for addiction".

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