Stories about people being hospitalized for and even dying from severe bleeding after using synthetic cannabinoids have filled the news since March 2018.
The responsible agent was determined to be brodifacoum, a powerful anticoagulant. The Wisconsin State Laboratory of Hygiene (WSLH) Chemical Response Program developed and implemented a quantitative test method for brodifacoum in blood, which is being used to diagnose and guide treatment length for patients.
The WSLH’s and Indiana State Department of Health laboratory’s involvement in these cases is featured in the Summer 2018 issue of the Association of Public Health Laboratories Lab Matters magazine – https://view.joomag.com/lab-matters-summer-2018/0966891001535548469/p16?short
Latest information on cases – Wisconsin Department of Health Services – https://www.dhs.wisconsin.gov/chemical/synthetic-cannabinoids.htm
The WSLH Chemical Emergency Response Team received an award from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s national Laboratory Response Network (LRN) for their rapid response to the ongoing brodifacoum exposures – http://www.slh.wisc.edu/accolades-for-wslhs-chemical-emergency-response-team/