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Salvia divinorum is a perennial herb in the mint family native to certain areas of the Sierra Mazateca region of Oaxaca, Mexico. The plant, which can grow to over three feet in height, has large green leaves, hollow square stems and white flowers with purple calyces, can also be grown successfully outside of this region . Salvia divinorum has been used by the Mazatec Indians for its ritual divination and healing. The active constituent of Salvia divinorum has been identified as salvinorin A. Currently, neither Salvia divinorum nor any of its constituents, including salvinorin A, are controlled under the federal Controlled Substances Act (CSA). However, the abuse of Salvia Divinorum is gaining popularity in the United States, particulary by adolescents and young adults.
A limited number of studies have reported the effects of using either plant material or salvinorin A. Psychic effects include perceptions of bright lights, vivid colors and shapes, as well as body movements and body or object distortions. Other effects include dysphoria, uncontrolled laughter, a sense of loss of body, overlapping realities, and hallucinations (seeing objects that are not present). Adverse physical effects may include incoordination, dizziness, and slurred speech.
Scientific studies show that salvinorin A is a potent and selective kappa opioid receptor agonist. Other drugs that act at the kappa opioid receptor also produce hallucinogenic effects and dysphoria similar to that produced by salvinorin A. Salvinorin A does not activate the serotonin 2A receptor, which mediates the effects of other schedule I hallucinogens. Due to the hallucinogenic effects there is a substantial risk of injury or death as a result of impaired judgment due to disruptions of sensory and cognitive functions
According to a National Survey on Drug Use and Health Report published by SAMHSA in February 2008, it is estimated that 1.8 million persons aged 12 or older used Salvia divinorum in their lifetime, a approximately 750,000 did so in the past year. Use was more common among young adults (18 to 25 years old) as opposed to older adults (>26 years of age). Young adults were 3 times more likely than youths aged 12 to 17 to have used Salviadivinorum in the past year. Use is more common in males than females.
The Drug Enforcement Administration has prepared this report on salvia divinorum. You can find the original materials here: http://www.justice.gov/dea/concern/salvia_divinorum.html. If you find yourself in need of an Ohio DUI attorney, contact Charles M. Rowland II at (937) 879-9542 or visit www.DaytonDUI.com.