Synthetic drug warning

Authorities are reminding the public of the dangers of synthetic cannabis after a Northern Territory woman died last month after allegedly ingesting synthetic cannabis.

The woman’s death is still being investigated and it is unknown if the use of synthetic cannabis contributed to her death.

The recent inquest into the death of Christopher Malyshcko in Darwin’s Holtze prison highlighted the risks associated with the use of synthetic cannabis which was linked to his death. The findings into the death of Mr Malyschko referenced information from the Alcohol and Drug Foundation stating, “There is no safe way to use synthetic cannabis…the effects of synthetic cannabinoids are unpredictable and are more dangerous than plant-derived cannabis”.

Police also warn that depending upon the type of synthetic cannabis, a person in possession of it may be charged with an offence under the Misuse of Drugs Act 1990 if it is found to contain Schedule 2 substances or charged under the Medicines, Poisons and Therapeutic Goods Act 2012.

NT Health advises the side effects of using synthetic cannabis can include nausea, anxiety, paranoia, brain swelling, seizures, hallucinations, aggressions, heart palpitations and chest pains.

Help is available for users to stop using synthetic cannabis from the Alcohol and Drug Information Service. The service is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Phone: 1800 131 350.

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