Kratom Manufacturers Face Wrongful Death Lawsuits
There have been numerous wrongful death lawsuits filed related to the “dietary supplement” kratom, which is actually an addictive drug that acts on the brain’s opioid receptors producing similar highs and deleterious effects. Recent lawsuits have been filed in Georgia where kratom remains readily available at gas stations despite being listed as a controlled substance. It remains legal to sell in most states, but is not readily available at convenience stores.
The lone legitimate use of kratom appears to be to mitigate the impact of opioid withdrawal. However, the substance is being sold as a “dietary supplement” meaning that individuals should be taking the addictive substance on a daily basis. While most don’t have issues with allowing the public access to something they can use to help themselves, the larger issue is not the availability of the substance, but the manner in which it is marketed. Today, it is being sold on alternative science sites as a dietary supplement that you can take on a daily basis to help with anxiety or whatever else.
Obviously, using kratom on a daily basis the same way you would use a dietary supplement would foster an immediate addiction. Today, individuals are dying from kratom poisoning even as the vendors claim the substance is “safe and natural”.
What does science say?
The science supports the claim that an individual can take too much kratom, overdose, and die. It operates on the same system that heroin and other opioids operate on, albeit in a much weaker way. Part of the problem is that while kratom is more or less safe in its natural form, the highly-concentrated single-serving shots they sell are much less safe. Kratom can cause similar overdose deaths as heroin since it operates on the same receptors. However, little is known about the drug and less has been done to study it. Those who take kratom occasionally suffer acute toxicity.
In one case, a father is claimed to have keeled over while eating dinner with his family after taking a highly-concentrated shot of kratom with his dinner. Kratom has been associated with seizures and a handful of deaths over the years. No one really knows how much kratom is too much, how much you need to feel the effects, and how long it stays and builds up in your system. It is extremely unethical to sell it as a safe dietary supplement without warning the public about the possible dangers.
Ultimately, kratom is exactly the type of substance that we should restrict. Companies that sell it should be required to conduct studies to better inform the public, ensure that the drug can be used safely, and restrict the type of marketing that can be done.
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