Incident prompts warning to Mississippi residents about potential dangers with Delta-8 THC

Published 11:22 am Saturday, March 11, 2023

A leading provider of treatment for substance use disorders and co-occurring mental health conditions issued a warning to the residents of Mississippi about the potential dangers associated with Delta-8-Tetrahydrocannabinol.

A recent story about Delta-8-Tetrahydrocannabinol products allegedly fentanyl-laced garnered significant coverage, and though those findings have yet to be confirmed, experts at Oxford Treatment Center fear that many are not aware of the other adulterants in these products that may prove to be harmful.

“My concern for the people who use these products is that they’re under the impression that this is a 100% pure and natural product when that couldn’t be further from the truth,” said Mark Stovall, CEO of Oxford Treatment Center. “What you have is a diluted substance manufactured with no oversight resulting in a drug with questionable, and potentially lethal, additives that the consumer is not aware of.”

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Though Delta-8-Tetrahydrocannabinol is a naturally occurring cannabinoid, it exists in minute amounts not nearly enough for the mass manufacturing of products containing the substance. Instead, cannabidiol oil, or CBD oil, is exposed to a number of chemicals and processes resulting in a reaction that produces Delta-8-Tetrahydrocannabinol. The active ingredient in virtually all products sold to consumers online and in smoke shops – including gummies, tinctures and vape pens – containing this substance was produced this way.

Unfortunately, unidentified compounds, residual metals, strong acids and other byproducts of the chemical reaction are also produced and have been found in Delta-8-Tetrahydrocannabinol products. Other additives, such as K2 or Spice, and concerning cannabinoids not found in nature are also ingredients in these products.

“Patients entering treatment with a history of using this substance exhibit many of the same psychiatric adverse effects exhibited by those who have a history of synthetic cannabinoid use,” said Stovall. “Psychosis, worsened psychiatric conditions, suicidal ideation, aggression and other physiological issues are often seen, and it seems that a lot of users don’t know that these are potential outcomes that stem from the use of Delta-8-THC products.”

Unfortunately, experts at Oxford Treatment Center believe this won’t be an isolated event.

“While the incident of finding fentanyl and heroin in packaged products occurred elsewhere, it’s only a matter of time that we have a similar incident.” said Stovall. “Isotonitazene and nitazene analogs, xylazine, para-fluorofentanyl, and a number of substances that exist below the radar, and aren’t routinely tested for, are being added to the substances that are taking the lives of Mississippians, why would Delta-8 products be any different?”