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Sunday, November 23, 2014
Washington Poison Center Reports Large Jump in Marijuana Exposures
November 20th, 2014/
The Washington Poison Center reported a large jump in calls about marijuana exposures in October. The majority of exposures likely resulted from marijuana obtained at medical marijuana dispensaries, officials said.
The spikes in exposure were greatest in teenagers, Reuters reports. Marijuana exposures can cause adverse reactions including increased heart rate, paranoia or stomach illness, the Poison Center said.
Only a handful of recreational marijuana stores have opened so far in the state. “The medical marijuana industry is largely unregulated and not subject to the scrutiny and oversight by the Liquor Control Board that recreational marijuana must go through,” Dr. Alexander Garrard, Clinical Managing Director of the Washington Poison Center, noted on its website.
Garrard said 210 marijuana exposures were reported in the first nine months of 2014, more than in all of last year. “Our thought is that the spike is potentially related to the number of unlicensed medical marijuana dispensaries that are opening up around the state,” he said. He noted the dispensaries have been expanding steadily in the past year.
The dispensaries sell products of unconfirmed potency, as well as edible products that appeal to children, such as lollipops and gummy bears, Garrard said.