Kratom is the latest unregulated substance concerning Pennsylvania lawmakers

Among legislation Pennsylvania lawmakers will consider when they return to Harrisburg for voting sessions after an absence of more than two months is regulation of a plant-based substance that can produce opioid- and stimulant-like effects.

Although kratom and kratom-based products are legal and accessible in many areas throughout the U.S., including Pennsylvania, the Food and Drug Administration and other federal agencies continue to review emerging evidence to inform kratom policy, according to the National Institute on Drug Abuse.

Kratom is derived from leaves of a tree native to Southeast Asia and has become popular for various uses, including as a coffee-like stimulant and to fight pain and anxiety. Among the unapproved uses is for treatment of addiction; it’s believed that many of those who buy kratom are using it as a natural alternative to the prescription drug suboxone, which treats symptoms of withdrawal from opioids such as pain pills and heroin.

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