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News From the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
February 5, 2014

Synthetic Marijuana Sends Hundreds for Emergency Care in Colorado

JAMA. 2014;311(5):457. doi:10.1001/jama.2014.47

More than 200 people in Colorado who smoked synthetic marijuana during a 1-month period last summer developed altered mental status severe enough to require emergency care, according to a state public health investigation.

The investigation was prompted by several hospitals that contacted the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE). Increasing numbers of patients had come to their emergency departments with aggression, agitation, confusion, and other symptoms after smoking the synthetic drug. The CDPHE asked all Colorado emergency departments to report through a Web-based system any patients treated with altered mental status who used synthetic marijuana between August 21 and September 18.

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