Kratom Boosts Salmonella Outbreak

22 February, 2018, 00:39 | Author: Keith Rowe
  • Powders capsules and teas made from the herbal alternative kratom have been linked to salmonella infections in 28 people in the US the CDC announced Tuesday

In the meantime, the CDC says because the source of salmonella contamination has not been identified, kratom should not be consumed in any form.

The FDA recommends that consumers not use these or any kratom products and dispose of any products now in their possession. A member of the coffee family, kratom grows natively in Southeast Asia where its leaves are well-known for their psychoactive effects.

The FDA has always been skeptical of the benefits of kratom, having placed import alerts on the substance in 2012 and 2014.

The agency reported 28 people have been infected with salmonella in 20 states, and 11 of them have been hospitalized. "The investigation indicates that kratom products could be contaminated with Salmonella and could make people sick", the CDC says on its website.

Laura Gieraltowski, the CDC's foodborne outbreak team lead, said it's not yet known how the kratom would have come to be contaminated with salmonella, noting it could have happened in processing, or the plants could have been contaminated in the field. Earlier this month, Food and Drug Administrator Scott Gottlieb warned consumers about kratom, saying an FDA analysis shows compounds in the plant act like prescription-strength opioids.


According to a bulletin from the CDC, a multistate Salmonella outbreak has been traced to supplements made from the plant.

"I want to be clear on one fact: there are now no FDA-approved therapeutic uses of kratom", Gottlieb said. The agency has received reports concerning the safety of kratom, including deaths that are potentially associated with it.

Kratom, a plant-based opioid substitute, is listed as a drug of concern by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration, though it's not banned in Nevada.

As it has made its way to the USA, kratom has gained a reputation as an opioid alternative to help people wean themselves off of the risky and addictive drugs with milder withdrawal symptoms, but there have not been clinical studies to prove this.

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