Today, we delve into the world of kratom, an herbal supplement that has been causing debates in statehouses and courtrooms nationwide. According to a recent NPR article, events have shed light on the need for increased awareness and responsible usage of such products to prevent potential harm and fatalities.
Kratom, derived from the dried leaves of a tree in the coffee family, has been used as a folk medicine in Southeast Asia for centuries. Millions of Americans now pick up kratom at gas stations, vape shops, bars, or online. The plant’s effects range from acting as a stimulant and social lubricant at low doses to producing a euphoric state similar to opioids at higher doses. However, the latter has raised serious concerns about its potential for addiction, seizures, and even death.
One such establishment that serves kratom is Kavasutra, a bar in Lantana, Florida. It attracts patrons who seek nonalcoholic botanical drinks and find solace in kratom tea. While many customers vouch for its benefits, there have been dozens of wrongful death lawsuits filed against the product and how it is marketed. Last week, a jury in Washington state awarded a $2.5 million verdict in the first kratom wrongful death trial in the U.S.
The story of Cindy Ross from Palm Beach Gardens, Florida, highlights the tragic consequences of irresponsible kratom usage. Her 30-year-old son, Max, tragically passed away after consuming alcohol and a significant amount of kratom, possibly in a concentrated form. The medical examiner determined that the combination proved lethal. Ross, like thousands of others, is advocating for increased government regulation of kratom to ensure proper labeling and guidance on safe usage.
Krystal Talavera’s case in Boynton Beach, Florida, is another heart-wrenching example. Kratom intoxication was found to be the sole cause of her death, leading to a federal court awarding more than $4.6 million in damages to her family. These wrongful death lawsuits highlight the need for vendors to provide clear warnings and instructions when selling potentially dangerous products.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) warns against using kratom, as it stimulates the same brain receptors as morphine and can be addictive. However, the FDA does not currently regulate kratom as a drug but rather as a food, leaving consumers to make educated guesses about the product’s makeup and safe usage.
The American Kratom Association calls for government regulation, but it raises critical questions about safety and efficacy. While advocates acknowledge kratom’s potential medicinal benefits, they also emphasize the need for further research to understand its proper dosages and interactions fully.
We advocate for the rights and safety of individuals. We understand that staying informed is crucial to making responsible choices for your health and well-being. Kratom’s controversial status exemplifies the importance of knowing what we put into our bodies and being aware of potential risks.
As we await more comprehensive scientific research and government regulation, it is essential to approach new food and drug trends with caution. Prioritizing safety and seeking expert advice can help us navigate the ever-changing landscape of herbal supplements and ensure our well-being is safeguarded.
If you or someone you know has been affected by kratom or any other products that raise safety concerns, OnderLaw is here to provide guidance and support. Remember, your health is your most valuable asset, and responsible choices today can protect your well-being tomorrow. Contact us today for your free, no-obligation consultation.