Cannabinoid Hyperemesis Syndrome

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Regular medical and recreational use of cannabis is on the rise among all age groups. In most cases, this is associated with few side effects, but some regular users experience a wildly paradoxical reaction. While cannabis will normally suppress nausea and pain and stimulate appetite, weekly cannabis use can sometimes produce severe cramping, abdominal pain, vomiting, and nausea, known as cannabinoid hyperemesis syndrome (CHS). In this program, we explore the pathophysiology of CHS, discuss presentations that EMS may encounter, and review the current diagnostic and treatment criteria. Current estimates of cannabinoid hyperemesis syndrome affecting potentially 2.7 million people in the US annually, with significant increases in states with legalization. With complications of CHS, including kidney failure, electrolyte imbalance, and skin burns on patients seeking self-treatment, can EMS providers afford to be unprepared?

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ED Management of Cannabinoid Hyperemesis Syndrome: Breaking the Cycle

New England Center for Rescue & Emergency Medicine’s Own Programs:

About romduck

Rom Duckworth is a dedicated emergency responder and award-winning educator with more than twenty five years of experience working in career and volunteer fire departments, public and private emergency services and hospital based healthcare systems. Currently a career Fire Captain / Paramedic and EMS Coordinator Rom is a frequent speaker at national conferences and a regular contributor to research, magazines, and textbooks on topics of field operations, leadership, and education in emergency services. Contact Rom via