Synthetic Marijuana

Synthetic Marijuana

Information from Bradley Student Health Services


What is synthetic marijuana?

Synthetic marijuana, otherwise known as “K2” or “Spice” among others, is a commercially available product that have been sprayed with research chemicals.  These research chemical concoctions attach to the same places in the brain that marijuana does, causing a similar high.  More than 100 difference products have been created thus far, sometimes with a warning label “NOT FOR HUMAN CONSUMPTION”.


What are the dangers of smoking synthetic marijuana?

Synthetic marijuana has not been tested for human consumption and cannot be considered safe.   Due to the fact that these substances are added to another substance it is impossible to tell how much a person is consuming.  This produces a wide range of “effect” from the drug.  The “high” from these drugs can be similar to marijuana, although synthetic marijuana has tested 5 times more potent than the strongest marijuana.  Other effects from these drugs include but are not limited to agitation, anxiety, fast heartbeat, elevated blood pressure, respiratory complications, hallucinations, seizures and death.  There have also been links to heart disease and cancer. 


How long do the effects of synthetic marijuana last?

Due to the high variability of the amount of drug consumed, it is difficult to say how long the effects last.  Drug testing shows that the remnants of the drug can stay in your system for several weeks.


Is smoking synthetic marijuana illegal?

A national ban was placed on 5 of the most common synthetic marijuana concoctions on March 1, 2011.  K2 and Spice are both currently banned in Illinois.  Possession and/or use of synthetic marijuana is a violation of the University’s Standards of Conduct.