BY: Dina Zalewski | IN: Personal Injury
Several lawsuits, including one resulting in an $11 million verdict, allege the dangerous herbal supplement kratom can cause seizures, hallucinations, chills, vomiting, liver damage, and even death. Sommers Schwartz is actively investigating similar claims in Michigan and across the country.
Kratom is a psychoactive substance derived from the leaves of a coffee-like tree grown in Indonesia, Malaysia, Papua New Guinea, and Thailand. Kratom contains two main chemical components – mitragynine and 7-hydroxymitragynine (7-OH-mitragynine), which vary widely from plant to plant, making its effects unpredictable.
Users consume kratom by chewing or making tea from the leaves, ingesting capsules filled with kratom powder, or swallowing concentrated extract. According to a U.S. Food & Drug Administration report, people use kratom to self-treat problems, including pain, anxiety, depression, coughing, diarrhea, opioid disorder, and opioid withdrawal. In fact, sellers commonly market kratom by emphasizing its “healing powers,” promoting it as a safe alternative to opioids.
Although it is legal in the U.S., the FDA has not approved any prescription or over-the-counter products that contain Kratom. The agency has found that, while kratom offers no therapeutic benefits, it can be dangerously addictive.
Some users have experienced substance use disorder (SUD), which happens when kratom is consumed for longer than intended, consumed in larger-than-intended amounts, and continuous use despite adverse consequences. Increasing the danger, users can develop a tolerance, causing them to ingest more significant amounts to produce the same effect. Users can also become physically dependent on kratom and experience withdrawal symptoms when they stop using it.
As reported on NPR, several personal injury and wrongful death actions have been filed, seeking justice and compensation from businesses involved in the kratom trade and accusing them of failing to warn consumers of the dangers, among other claims.
If you or someone you love has been harmed or died after using kratom, please contact us to schedule a free and confidential consultation. We can help you recover damages for your injuries or loss and hold the kratom industry accountable.
View all posts byDina Zalewski
Dina Zalewski is an associate in Sommers Schwartz’s Medical Malpractice Litigation and Personal Litigation groups. From a young age, she knew she wanted to be a lawyer and, because her family was directly affected by a healthcare provider’s medical negligence, joining the medical malpractice team here at Sommers Schwartz was a natural fit.