Napoleon allegedly said, “The right information is nine tenths of any battle.”
In the battle for substance abuse detection, the war on drugs has taken a turn with the scourge of synthetic cannabinoids and synthetic bath salt derivatives, as they become increasingly more popular worldwide. But don’t take just my word for it, according to the UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), amphetamine-type stimulants, including synthetic bath salt derviatives, became more popular worldwide than the perennial leaders cocaine or heroin.
While synthetic bath salts get lumped together with synthetic marijuana and K2/Spice as the same category, the truth, according to David Kroll, a pharmacologist with the North Carolilna Museum of Natural Sciences (who has been following the new synthetic drug products for years), bath salts are not just one drug, and not the same thing as synthetic marijuana. “They contain compounds that work by very diverse mechanisms of action to cause very different psychoactive effects. We’ve got chemicals with a super-intense, super-paranoid marijuana high, with cocaine-like effects, and MDMA-like empathic effects.”
Bath salts contain methylenedioxypyrovalerone (MDPV) and/or mephedrone. (MDPV is related chemically to MDMA or ecstacy and MDA.)
What was really in those shiny foil packages?
Until recently, nobody really knew with certainty just what was inside those shiny foil packages, since the mixtures constantly change and evolve. Though the availability of synthetics first emerged around 2004, according to Shawn Clinton, PhD, University of Utah writing in Therapeutics & Toxins News (Spring 2011), a lot of progress has been made recently in developing methods to detect presence of these compounds in abusers/users.
A common myth about synthetics
Some clinicians erroneously report there are no methods developed to detect compounds like JWH-018 and JWH-073.
For those, please share with them this information:
At Overbrook, we have seen a great demand for the technology in the screening of K2/Spice and Bath Salts in particular due to the shortcomings of EIA.
To learn more, Ask for the 7 FAQs we’ve developed to help in this regard –firstname.lastname@example.org, or call 617-364-7683