The Shadow Behind the Leaf: Combatting Kratom

Kratom- The gas station drug that has turned into a billion-dollar industry in the U.S.

Kratom is a plant native to Southeast Asia, known scientifically as Mitragyna speciosa. It contains compounds that interact with opioid receptors in the brain, leading to effects ranging from stimulation at low doses to sedation and euphoria at higher doses.

Looking Beyond the Leaves:

Kratom has been the subject of controversy due to its potential side effects and safety concerns. It can cause issues like aggression, anxiety, nausea, vomiting, and in severe cases, addiction and even death.

Kratom is available in a variety of forms, including:

  • potent powders
  • tablets that can be chewed
  • gummies
  • liquid formulations

Shady Marketing Tactics:

Misleading methods are prevalent in the kratom market. For example, a report by The Tampa Bay Times has shown that some kratom brands, like O.P.M.S., use clever tricks to avoid legal scrutiny and keep their operations hidden. They often create a web of different businesses and legal entities, making it hard to trace who’s really responsible for the products and where they’re coming from.

Leading the charge? Peyton Palaio and Mark Reilly, individuals previously associated with the synthetic cannabinoid industry, often referred to as “spice.”

Regulation and Rules:

The FDA has not approved kratom for sale in the U.S., and it operates in a legal grey area. Some states, including Alabama, have banned kratom due to health concerns. The FDA has issued warnings about the risks of liver toxicity, seizures, and substance use disorder associated with kratom.

Recent court decisions on alleged kratom-related deaths have been linked to the failure of product manufacturers not providing labeling instructions for responsible use and little or no information on the actual contents. The FDA has been criticized for not publishing good manufacturing practices guidelines and failing to require proper labeling or marketing.

Combatting Kratom:

Beasley Allen is investigating cases of serious adverse effects experienced by individuals who have consumed products containing Kratom. We recently filed a lawsuit on behalf of our client, Jennifer Williams, who passed away after Kratom usage.

Jennifer, like many others, believed Kratom was safe. She thought it could help her, but instead, it led to tragic consequences. When products don’t have clear warnings, it’s like driving without street signs. We will continue to investigate these cases and fight for those affected by Kratom use.

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