Spice

Spice (K2) [updated 20.11.2019 by Samuel Vorster]

What is Spice (K2)?

Spice is synthetic cannabinoid comprising of a combination of herbs laced with synthetic chemicals meant to mimic cannabis’s psychoactive substances.  Synthetic cannabinoids substances that are categorized as a designer drug.

It has a flaky texture, green in colour and is usually smoked or, in some parts of the world, distributed in liquid form which can be used in e-cigarettes for example.

What effects does Spice have on users?

Like cannabis, Spice work on the same neuro-transmitter (CB1 receptor) as cannabis (aka dagga) can make users feel happy and relaxed, but the effects are much stronger and often unpredictable.

Users recall possible negative experiences of feeling confused, extremely anxious, paranoid and bouts of unwanted hallucinations.

Emergency hospital visits have been reported from the use of synthetic cannabinoids which have included symptoms associated with kidney damage, heart abnormalities, liver damage and psychosis.

Treatment for synthetic cannabinoids

With most cases of withdrawal are treated with symptom relief medications and do not pose any adverse medical complications.  Treatment of choice would be cognitive behavioural therapies, psychoeducation and a 12 step supportive program.  Importance would need to be made on assessing patients for polysubstance use and other co occurring disorders.

References

  1. Wikipedia contributors. (2019, November 3). Synthetic cannabinoids. In Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Retrieved 14:15, November 14, 2019, from https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Synthetic_cannabinoids&oldid=924454820
  2. (2018, February 5). Synthetic Cannabinoids (K2/Spice). Retrieved from https://www.drugabuse.gov/publications/drugfacts/synthetic-cannabinoids-k2spice on 2019, November 15