As a pharmacist, I am deeply concerned about the recent development of irresponsible politicians lobbying for ketum legalisation.
As mentioned on the Mayo Clinic website, ketum is unsafe and ineffective: “Although people who take ketum believe in its value, researchers who have studied ketum think its side effects and safety problems more than offset any potential benefits. Poison control centres in the United States received about 1,800 reports involving use of ketum from 2011 through 2017, including reports of death.”
“About half of these exposures resulted in serious negative outcomes such as seizures and high blood pressure. Five of the seven infants who were reported to have been exposed to ketum went through withdrawal. Ketum has been classified as possibly unsafe when taken orally.”
Ketum has a number of known side effects, including:
- Weight loss.
- Dry mouth.
- Chills, nausea, and vomiting.
- Changes in urine and constipation.
- Liver damage.
- Muscle pain.
Ketum also affects the mind and nervous system:
- Hallucinations and delusions.
- Depression and delusions.
- Breathing suppression.
- Seizure, coma, and death.
I hope the government will stand firm on this issue, and must not give way to irresponsible politicians who have vested interests in this issue.
Our future generation deserves a better future than one stained with ketum abuse.
Lim Soon Hong is a pharmacist.
- This is the personal opinion of the writer or publication and does not necessarily represent the views of CodeBlue.