Baystate Health seeing increase in weed-related emergency visits

Hampden County

Baystate Health said there has been a spike in patients overdosing on marijuana since recreational pot became legal in Massachusetts.

Researchers at the University of Colorado School of Medicine said ER visits linked to cannabis at one Colorado hospital tripled between 2012 to 2016.

Their study found about 10 percent of marijuana-related ED visits were associated with edible forms of weed.

Baystate Medical Center’s Emergency Department said most of their patients who came in for a weed-related visit either used too much of the edible or ate it too fast.

“It takes anywhere from 30 minutes to 2 hours to take effect,” Dr. Gerald Beltran explained. “Let the effects take in after that. Don’t rush it, because that’s when we see the unwanted side effects: when people are taking too much and don’t realize they are doing it too quickly.”

Dr. Beltran advises only using edibles from a licensed recreational marijuana store, which have the proper dose of THC.

Dr. Beltran added that many of their young patients who overdose on edibles are unknowingly consuming their parent’s marijuana.

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