E-Cigs and Drug Use

 E-Cigs and Drug Use   The use of tobacco products can lead to nicotine addiction and prolonged use can result in lung disease, cancer and cardiovascular disease.1 Electronic cigarettes or e-cigs are perceived safer than traditional tobacco cigarettes and their use is on the rise.2 “In 2012 adolescent ever-use increased to 6.8% and, among high[…]

What is “High”? A Look at the Legalization of “Marijuana” Part II

What is “High”? A Look at the Legalization of “Marijuana” Part II A recent survey found that 6.8 percent of drivers, mostly under age 35, who were involved in accidents tested positive for THC; alcohol levels above the legal limit were found in 21 percent of such drivers.”-National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) In the[…]

What is “High”? A Look at the Legalization of “Marijuana”

What is “High”? A Look at the Legalization of “Marijuana”  “mar·i·jua·na1 noun 1: hemp 2: the dried leaves and flowering tops of the pistillate hemp plant that yield THC and are sometimes smoked in cigarettes for their intoxicating effect”1 The term marijuana, also known as pot, grass, and weed, refers to the psychoactive (mind-altering) chemical delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol[…]

The “Sly” Foxy Methoxy (5-MeO-DIPT)

The “Sly” Foxy Methoxy (5-MeO-DIPT) 5-MeO-DIPT (5-methoxy-N, N-diisopropyltryptamine) is not a new drug, with its introduction to the forensic toxicology community in the late 1990’s, but it has regained popularity as one of the many synthetic compounds available to drug users. 5-MeO-DIPT goes by the street names of “Foxy” or “Foxy Methoxy”, is similar to[…]

Abuse of Over-the-Counter Drugs

Abuse of Over-the-Counter Drugs                                             When we think about drug abuse in the era of marijuana legalization (circa February 2014), it along with illicit drugs  like cocaine or heroin may be the first things that[…]

Size Matters-Dose Size That Is… “Designer Drugs”

 Size Matters-Dose Size That Is… “Designer Drugs”  In the post “Size Matters-Dose Size That Is… Prescription Drugs” we took a look at dosage of prescription drugs as well as the risks of prescription drug abuse and some of the organizations battling this growing problem. When asked how prescription narcotics were obtained for nonmedical use, 70% of[…]

Size Matters-Dose Size That Is… Prescription Drugs

Size Matters-Dose Size That Is… Prescription Drugs   Legal cases involving the use of the compound zolpidem, a drug used to induce and/or maintain sleep, have made the news with the rare “sleep driving” scenario-where an individual unknowingly operates a car while they should be asleep in bed. Nevertheless a more common situation exits and[…]

Alternative Perspectives: A Horse of Many Colors By: Christina Coucke-Garza, Senior Forensic Drug Chemist

In the fields of Forensic Toxicology and Forensic Science, the day-to-day experiences of scientists can vary depending on the area of the world they serve. Our goal with the “Alternative Perspectives” series is to offer experiences from Forensic Scientists all over the world. We begin this journey with Christina Coucke-Garza’s “A Horse of Many Colors”[…]

Designer Drugs: Methylone

Designer Drugs: Methylone 3, 4 Methylenedioxymethcathinone or Methylone is a psychoactive substance of the phenethlamine class encountered either knowingly or unknowingly by users for the pharmacological similarities to 3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA, “Ecstasy”).1 As with many of the new psychoactive substances or “designer drugs” (Benzofury, NBOMe’s, BZP/TFMPP, etc.) sometimes the true identify of the compound(s) ingested (or[…]

Press Release: A2LA Accredits First Forensic Blood Alcohol Testing Laboratory-Fondren Forensics

  I had the pleasure of working with Fondren Forensics to assist in their goal to develop a Quality System for laboratory accreditation with the American Association for Laboratory Accreditation (A2LA). Fondren Forensics is an incredible organization to work with. Fondren Forensics offers blood alcohol analysis, civil consultation, testimony services, federal/military/NRS breath testing programs, Intoxilyzer® service/repair, seminars/corporate training, and[…]