Salmonella outbreak linked to kratom, Dozens sickened in multiple states


The regulator also said it was investigating a multistate outbreak of salmonella infections linked to products reported to contain kratom. Some consumers have hailed the drug as a "natural" pain remedy, but some medical experts say it can be risky, even deadly. "Eight (73 percent) of 11 people interviewed reported consuming kratom in pills, powder or tea", the CDC said. The Food and Drug Administration has issued increasingly urgent warnings about the herb, saying it acts like an opioid drug and advising people to stay away from it.

Here's what health officials know so far, and what you need to keep in mind.

Generally, any dietary supplement containing kratom would need to be the subject of a New Dietary Ingredient Notification demonstrating that the product will reasonably be expected to be safe.

Kratom - a plant that grows in Asia - poses serious health risks, according to the FDA.

And, the FDA says after supplements Botany Bay, Enhance Your Life and Divinity get yanked off the market, Divinity won't include kratom in any more products. The substance is often consumed in the form of powdered raw leaves, though sometimes it is made into a tea or other drink. "We appreciate the cooperation of companies now marketing any kratom product for human consumption to take swift action to remove these products from circulation to protect the public". Evidence suggests that the source of the outbreak is possibly kratom, which is a plant that is used as a substitute to opioids.

"Kratom is not a drug", the American Kratom Association says on its website. Kratom has different names such as Kakuam, Biak, Ketom, Thom and Thang.

Kratom is said to help ease opioid withdrawal, but is sometimes used recreationally. It is not an FDA-approved drug. But the supplement made headlines a few weeks ago, when Food and Drug Administration (FDA) officials said that kratom contains the same addictive, potentially risky chemicals found in opioids, and submitted a review to that effect to the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA).