Since March 7, 22 people in Illinois have experienced severe bleeding from their eyes and ears after using a synthetic cannabinoid also known as K2 or spice, according to the Chicago Tribune.
“Despite the perception that synthetic cannabinoids are safe and a legal alternative to marijuana, many are illegal and can cause severe illness,”Nirav D. Shah, director of the Illinois Department of Public Health , said in a statement Tuesday. “The recent cases of severe bleeding are evidence of the harm synthetic cannabinoids can cause.”
Here’s what you should know about K2:
What is K2?
K2, also known as fake weed or spice is a synthetic cannabinoid made of plant material coated in hundreds of manufactured chemicals.
Other common brand names for synthetic cannabinoids like K2 include AK-47, Mr. Happy, Scooby Snax, Kush or Kronic, according to the Atlanta-based Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.