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Mass. lawmakers consider banning "bath salts"

November 3, 2011

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BOSTON—Massachusetts lawmakers are set to hold a public hearing on a bill banning the sale of synthetic recreational drugs known as "bath salts" that mimic pot, cocaine and other stimulants.

The synthetic drugs can cause paranoia and hallucinations and have been linked with deaths and hundreds of calls to poison centers nationwide. Some states have banned the substances and the nation's largest doctors' group supports a national ban.

The Massachusetts bill sponsored by Attleboro Republican state Rep. George Ross would classify bath salts as a Class C substance under the state's drug laws.

The proposal is scheduled for a public hearing Thursday at the Statehouse.

An Associated Press analysis shows that the substances are increasingly causing users to fall seriously ill, with some suffering seizures and hallucinations.