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Center for Health Care Services notices alarming rise in synthetic marijuana

SAN ANTONIO --{} Over the past 3 months, The Center for Health Care Services{} has noticed an alarming rise in synthetic marijuana."We don't realize the size of enemy that we're fighting here and so it should be feared", said Brian Clark, Assistant Medical Director of the Restoration Center. Clark says four to six months ago, the Restoration Center{} had 5 to 10 patients reported using synthetic marijuana, in December 144 patients reported using the drug. "This has just been this huge increase. We really can't explain why", added Clark.The patients are brought in by law enforcement to the Restoration Center's sobering unit.Synthetic marijuana is also known as K-2 or spice, and the makers label the packages as potpourri or incense. The makers are constantly changing what they put{} inside the packaging since only some of the chemicals used to make the drug are illegal."So basically they're staying one step ahead of the game", Clark went on to say.Several Texas lawmakers have introduced bills to attempt to give law enforcement additional measures to keep the drugs off the streets.Meanwhile, Clark tells News 4 San Antonio he's seen firsthand what happens to people when they use synthetic marijuana."Every time that you use it you're taking a chance with your life", added Clark.Clark went on to say the drug can have a different effect every time you take it, including anxiety, a heart attack, hallucinations, and even death.Clark knows synthetic marijuana isn't going away but he wants people especially parents just to be on the lookout for it, because the effects of the drug are detrimental. "I think realizing that this is worse than Russian roulette using this synthetic marijuana, because every chamber in this gun is loaded", said Clark.The Center for Health Care Services Restoration Center is open 24 hours a day, anyone can visit the center to receive services.For more information you can call (210) 261-1000.

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