Health Officials Issue Warnings About delta-8 THC

The Food and Drug Administration and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have issued warnings about products containing Delta-8 tetrahydrocannabinol or delta-8 THC amid a rise in reported complications and hospitalizations.

Delta-8 is one of more than 100 compounds or “cannabinoids" found in the cannabis plant. It is less potent than delta-9 THC, which causes the typical marijuana high. It is more poorly understood and unregulated. It is often labeled merely as “hemp.”

“CBD can be synthetically converted into delta-8 THC, as well as delta-9 THC and other THC isomers, with a solvent, acid, and heat to produce higher concentrations of delta-8 THC than those found naturally in the cannabis plant,” according to the CDC. “This conversion process, used to produce some marketed products, may create harmful by-products that presently are not well-characterized.”

“It is important for consumers to be aware that delta-8 THC products have not been evaluated or approved by the FDA for safe use in any context. They may be marketed in ways that put the public health at risk and should especially be kept out of reach of children and pets,” the FDA said.

Between December 2020 and July 2021, the FDA received adverse event reports for 22 people ranging from vomiting and hallucinations to instability and loss of consciousness. 14 of the patients went to the hospital.

In addition, poison control centers “received 661 exposure cases of delta-8 THC products between January 2018 and July 31, 2021, 660 of which occurred between January 1, 2021, and July 31, 2021.”


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