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Teenage girl suffered strokes, brain damage after smoking synthetic marijuana

synthetic marijuana spice istock.jpg

Spice is a synthetic cannaboid that is legal in some U.S. states. It is commonly used as a replacement drug for marijuana.

A teenage girl from Texas suffered from multiple strokes after smoking synthetic marijuana – leaving her brain damaged, blind and paralyzed, the Independent reported.

Seventeen-year-old Emily Bauer, from Cypress, Texas, purchased the fake marijuana at a local gas station with friends in December.  Just 15 minutes after smoking it, Emily said she had a migraine and wanted to lie down.

Later on, the police were called to restrain Emily, after she suffered from a series of strokes – which ultimately triggered a psychotic state.  She ended up having violent hallucinations, running into walls and urinating on herself, according to the Independent.

Her friends and family hoped to dissuade her from taking the drug again once its effects wore off.  But 24 hours later, Emily was still having hallucinations and trying to hurt herself.  

Doctors decided to put Emily in a medically induced coma in order to run tests on her brain.  They discovered her seizures were a result of severe vasculitis – an inflammation of the blood vessels, ultimately restricting blood and oxygen flow to the brain.

Over time, pressure on Emily’s brain became so intense that her doctors had to drill a hole in her skull to provide some relief.  Doctors told her family more than 70 percent of her brain was ‘dead’ and she would neither recognize her family or be able to use her arms and legs again.  However, after the family decided to remove her breathing tube, Emily began to show signs of recovery – even telling her mother she loved her at one point.

Emily is still paralyzed and very confused, but has recently started to reuse her arms and legs – and even eat solid foods.

In order to educate the public about Emily’s story and the dangers of synthetic marijuana, Emily’s family has created a non-profit organization called Synthetic Awareness For Emily (SAFE).  

Click for more from the Independent.

Click to visit SAFE’s Facebook page.