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Synthetic marijuana causes more cases of severe bleeding in Wisconsin

September 20, 2018

The number of people in Wisconsin who have had severe bleeding associated with the use of synthetic cannabinoids has increased to 80, the state Department of Health Services said Tuesday.

Sixteen additional cases have been confirmed in which synthetic marijuana containing a chemical in rat poison resulted in bleeding, the DHS said in a statement. The health agency has documented cases in Dane, Milwaukee, Rock, Outagamie and Fond du Lac counties.

One person has died during the outbreak from using synthetic marijuana, commonly called “Fake Weed,” “K2,” or “Spice,” according to the DHS.

The department started investigating the outbreak in March and found that those affected had used a synthetic marijuana containing brodifacoum, a chemical used in rat poison, the statement said.

“This product can stay in a person’s system for months and bleeding could happen at any time, so anyone who has used synthetic cannabinoids should see a doctor,” the statement said.

The department urges anyone who has used the product that experiences unexplained bleeding, such as a nosebleed, bleeding gums or bruising, to immediately call 911.

Synthetic cannabinoids are illegal in Wisconsin and are typically sprayed onto dried plant material and smoked, but also can be mixed into liquid and used in an e-cigarette, according to the DHS.

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