Publisher's note: This informational nugget was sent to me by Ben Shapiro, who represents the Daily Wire, and since this is one of the most topical news events, it should be published on BCN.
The author of this post is Ashe Schow.
A man using a synthetic drug known as Spice allegedly has sawed off his own leg.
The Daily Star reported
Friday that the unnamed man reportedly took the "zombie drug" in Prokopyevsk, a city in western Russia, and then proceeded to cut his own leg off, leaving behind a bloody stump. (You can view the picture on the Star. Warning: graphic content.)
"Shocking pictures appear to show the man with a tourniquet wrapped around a bloody stump after he reportedly cut his left leg off above the knee,"
the outlet reported. "Pictures shared shared [sic] on media show the man as he lies on a hospital gurney after doctors apparently battled to stem the blood and save his life. According to the reports, the man carried out the self-amputation after consuming Spice along with a cocktail of painkillers."
The man somehow managed to get himself to the hospital. The Star reported that local Russian outlets said the man was taken to intensive care, but the images being shared on social media were from when he was being moved to a general ward.
The National Institutes of Health describes
Spice as "a mix of herbs (shredded plant material) and laboratory-made chemicals with mind-altering effects. It is often called 'synthetic marijuana' or 'fake weed' because some of the chemicals in it are similar to ones in marijuana."
The effects of the drug, however, can be vastly different. While Spice does yield some of the same results as marijuana - relaxation, elevated mood, altered perception, or feeling detached from reality - bad reactions can result in:
"Because the chemicals used in Spice have a high potential for abuse and no medical benefit, the Drug Enforcement Administration has made many of the active chemicals found in Spice illegal. However, the people who make these products try to avoid these laws by using different chemicals in their mixtures,"
- fast heart rate
- throwing up
- extreme anxiety or nervousness
- hallucinations (seeing or hearing things that aren't there)
- feeling confused
- violent behavior
- suicidal thoughts
the NIH stated. "Spice is most often labeled 'not for human consumption' and disguised as incense. Sellers of the drug try to lead people to believe it is 'natural' and therefore harmless, but it is neither. In fact, the actual effects of spice can be unpredictable and, in some cases, severe or cause death."
NIH also said Spice works differently on the brain than the THC in marijuana.
"What is known is that the chemicals found in Spice attach to the same nerve cell receptors as THC, the main mind-altering ingredient in marijuana. Some of the chemicals in Spice, however, attach to those receptors more strongly than THC, which could lead to much stronger effects,"
NIH reported. "The resulting health effects can be unpredictable and dangerous. Additionally, there are many chemicals that remain unidentified in products sold as Spice and it is therefore not clear how they may affect the user."
Spice has been said to leave users in a "zombie-like" state, but so far it doesn't appear others have done anything as drastic as cutting off their own legs. It can be suspected the man might have been on something other than just Spice. The Daily Mail reported
that the man had taken Spice and "a cocktail of painkillers."
Some commenters pointed out that the man would now qualify for disability benefits from the Russian government even though his wound was self-inflicted.