Spice: What Is It, And Can It Be Tested?

You may have heard of the newest drug phenomenon, known variously as “spice” or K2.  Sometimes called “Genie,” this drug has similar effects as marijuana, but unlike marijuana, it is (in most states) legal.

Spice, a type of synthetic cannabis you cannot home drug test for, yet.

Spice works like marijuana. A chemical in the spice mimics the activity THC has in the brain.  This results in a marijuana like high, with the same symptoms.  The potency of the drug varies across brand.

Some states have banned the drug, including Iowa.  Kansas and Missouri are trying to categorize spice with marijuana in terms of legality and involved fines (see this CBS news report for more).

What do you need to know?  Well, if you are concerned that someone is using spice, you cannot at the moment buy a home drug test for it.  There’s no doubt new technologies will develop in the next few years to test for it, but at the moment no hair, saliva, or urine home drug test can detect it.

However, the Redwood Toxicology lab did just recently come out with a urine-based lab test for it.  While not as convenient as a home test, it is the only current method of detecting spice use.  To learn more call 1-800-255-2159 or visit their website (Redwood Toxicology) to learn more about how it works.  We’ll be sure to keep you in the loop as far as how soon the test will be available on the instant drug test market, and if you have any questions, let us know!

Picture by Schorle via Wikipedia.

83 comments

  1. sloth says:

    i smoked spice for the past 2 days. It was also the first 2 times i have ever smoked it. I am a senior in high school and i have been smoking weed for over 3 years now. I know my limits, i know when im high. But when i smoked this sonic boom stuff, i was completely high. I was trippin balls for over an hour. Its insane but fun. I got to the point where my vision kept zooming in and out. I know for a fact this was spice a.k.a sonic boom. i bought it. But i do not recommend this drug if you are a first time smoker or you dont like weed. this stuff gives you an intense head high, thus starting to trip and having hallucinations. This is very similair to the marijuana high but just a bit stronger. The only bad thing about this is that it is very bad for you because it is an insense. people who say they have been hospitalized for this is because their all dumbasses and smoked way to much. the first time i tried it i thought i had to go to the hospital. let alone i was by myself so i didnt have anyone to calm me down. Your heart beats like a motherfucker. i felt my hearbeat in my stomach. This is a substitute for weed. i can get pulled over and a cop can look at it even test it while i sit back laughing because its not illegal for me to have. the cop will get so mad because he wasted his time searching your car for weed. I was arrested back in may for smoking a joint, yes, ill admit it dumb idea to walk around smoking, yes dumb idea to not eat it. now im on probation for 6 months and i smoke spice now. it gives you a decent high. but if your not with someone you WILL bug out and convince yourself that your dying. I have no clue what people are saying when they say there is a drug test for spice, its bullshit. so if you wanna get high just sit back and toke it up however you want, dutch(blunt), joint bowl or bong

  2. Josh says:

    Look, Spice is nowhere near as dangerous as some people say it is. Sure its in no way good for you and it would kill you from the carcinogens eventually but that’s about it. I don’t smoke it on a regular basis but i do every once in a while. I have literally taken a drug test the day after smoking it and passed no problem. BTW that was in April 2011. Any tests they have out for it are not your average take home drug test’s or something they would use in a rehab clinic. (Not saying you should be doing it if you need rehab) The tests that do exist are testing for JWH-018 and JWH-073 both of which are not used in anything that’s legally sold now. If your responsible and just smoke a little every now and again you’re not going to die and your defiantly not going to get addicted.

  3. MomAnd Teacher says:

    To reply to some of the comments: Yes there is testing for spice, but it is a separate process than normal drug tests in urine and takes 3 – 5 days to get results. I live in AZ and just had my son tested for spice at Tasc (This IS the place where people in the court system get tested, although I don’t know if the courts use the test – as it is a lot more expensive and time-consuming.) My son said he had not smoked any for about 5 days, but he still came up positive. The test says his urine was highly diluted (lots of water). He had 1 pg/ml and the cutoff level is 100pg/ml. I am trying to interpret this. What does the cutoff being higher mean? The test does say positive. Anyone with test result interpretation?

  4. Kimberly says:

    Well… For those of you out there that think “spice or K-2″ is not dangerous or addictive you are very wrong. It is. We just had a very promising young man SHOOT and KILL HIMSELF in our town, he was high on this drug. He had no behavior prior that would suggest he was suicidal, he was a very happy soul, he raced cars and was in college…so I decided to read up on it. When the drug was fist introduced it was sprayed on potpourri and you were to sit around smelling it and it would produce a mild “pot” like sensation. It was NEVER designed to smoke it. It is 10 times or more stronger than pot, it makes your heart race and alters your mood/emotions and there have been a lot of deaths from it. It must have a depressive quality to it, kids kill them selves after being on it..and not from overdose. People think because it is legal, it must be fine. How WRONG they are…It needs to be taken off the store shelves and made illegal! R.I.P. Jake…you will be missed!!!

  5. jay davidson says:

    There is a test for spice. I work at a boarding school and we just sent specimens to the lab. 4 students tested positive. It is illegal in Arizona

  6. Big G says:

    Well, In the Army the cutoff for THC is 50ng/ml, therefore if you test below the cutoff of 50ng then the results are negative. Your son tested positive even though his results were that far below the Cutoff? WTF

    Something in the pot ain’t clean.

  7. Kelly says:

    @MomAndTeacher…..with drug testing there are “cutoffs” like you said but any time the urine comes back very diluted which is the creatinine levels from the kidneys it sends up a red flag that the individual probably took sonething to “cleanse” their system. Which essentially makes it a positive test.
    Hope this helps .

  8. Tom says:

    I have smoke spice now for about 3-4 months at one point I was high affixed I would light up every brake at school before and after school also. I would go threw about 4 grams every 3 days. I never one threw up off it. I always smoked the brand happy tiger which get you pretty baked but not nearly as high as sonic boom. I smoked about half a joint of sonic boom one time and started to have a little seizure. I could not talk or move. I would say this product is dangerous and deffinantley addictive. I now rarely smoke it just like a couple times a month only on the weekends. Also it gets you higher the longer you hold it in. If you “ghost” ( meaning to hold it in till no smoke gets out you will get the highest.) I do believe this product can make you trip and make you do crazy thing as far as maybe killing your self. My friends girl friend tripped hard as broke up with him and started hitting him a few minutes after hitting it. But once her high went down about 30 min later she apologized and didn’t understand why it happened. All in all this product is dangerous and isn’t worth smoking. But I can see why people do especially of you can’t smoke bud. If I weren’t on probation I woulda never picked it up. If you can smoke the real thing don’t smoke this shit. Also for everyone’s questions about it being testable it can’t i smoked it about an hour before for my probation test and passed.

  9. Britny says:

    Look I know everyone wants to try this new drug because it’s legal and it’s stronger than weed. But if you enjoy your life don’t. Now I’ll admit I smoked K2 about 2 times. The first time it was soooo fun and it was amazing I felt great. The second time I only took 2 hits and I felt ok it wasn’t great like last time but it was ok. But when I got to school I was fine the first few hours and then after that BOOM!! I don’t know what the fuck happened I started freaking out I went outside and I thought that gravity was gonna give out and I was gonna fall towards the sky. It was scary but I’ll also admit it was stupid because my cousin smoked K2 and he O.D’d then he did it again and nothing was happening so you know he thought it was nothing then he smoked some shit I think called “Voodoo Doll” or something and he took like 3 hits off the bowl and he started to fucking spazz out. He fell down and his eyes rolled into the back of his head and he was making gagging sounds and he couldnt even talk luckily his friends dad was there to talk to him and help him. He saved my cousins life basically. And right when he could finally control his eyes he was puking left and right. He puked all night. Some of you K2 smokers probably won’t believe this but I’m not lying. You say that people smoked too much but really all that happens is it picks out randomly when to try and kill you. My cousin almost died 2 times because of this shit. I honestly don’t want anyone to go through what me and my cousin went through. You can smoke it if you want that’s your life your putting at risk and no K2 is not as dangerous as everyone says it’s nowhere near heroin or crack or any of that shit but it is a hullicigen. And it will fuck you up. My advice just stick to weed nobody ever O.D’d off of that. I haven’t found any reports of K2 killing anyone permanently so you can have fun with it but it’s still really dangerous.

  10. tricia says:

    Does this show up in hair follicle

  11. Catherine says:

    I’d just like to say that im all for spice and stuff some times but my mom had told me that she was gonna drug test me for it. i dont get it. But anyway i love spice sometimes but honestly i would not do it all the time. i have had friends who have decided they were gonna smoke spice all the time and literally their IQ dropped a bunch. its not smart to do all the time but its a good fuckin time every once in a while

  12. Patti says:

    I started using it because it was legal, I did no research on it because my computer gets checked. It was found it in my purse after smelling a hint of smoke in the bathroom. I felt like a trust was broken by the inturder entering my purse. Yet relieved I no longer had to hide it. To make a long story short, i’ve decided to quit! Now that it’s out in open I can research it, and i’ve come to realize it”s addicive more so than pot. Knowing this I figured the best way was to cut down, in a matter of four days I am only smoking a third of what I was. Every two days adding a half hour wait time, between getting high. It is working well for me so far, i’ll be off it soon and will look ahead never to go back! I hope this post helps someone, somewhere. Know you can do it if you try, one day at a time.

  13. dizzy says:

    spice is a bad drug but i smoke it and i hate te way it feels i would rather smoke real but i cant cause i get tested and nothing is wrong about smoking in i mean yeah it has a lot of chemicals that arent good for you but its okay i smoke like 9 grams everyday for like 1 year already and im not dead or been to the doctor for it.

  14. dave says:

    Ive been smoking spice for a few months and just descovered that the ingredient jwh018, and jwh073 are one of the many chemicals that are not in the spice ive got can they still test for it without those key chemicals?

  15. brianna says:

    the spice with jwh kills the new spice “herbal inscence” does not, even if it is smoked…

  16. brianna says:

    that is why the jwh is illegal now but they have made new spices,,, such as legal devil, fly n high, and many many more that people smoke and have not died from yet…

  17. casie says:

    i now a lot of people that smoke the stuff and i see nothing wrong with it. the states wanted to find away to make pot legal but they cant tax it .now this stuff they cant tax it so band it. really i think they should leave people alone that smoke it and find the people that that are sell meth and cocaine to kids and people that use it.
    its just like cigs you have to be old enought to bye that .this to so many people hating on it but has it been on the news were some one killed over pot are spice . no . people say it is so bad . but give it to people with health problem. there is so much i can say on it that would have people thinking some diffrents

  18. Albert says:

    I smoked a spice called Dat Nola recently. That same day I had to summit a urine analysis which stated testing for synth-canni.I would like to know if I would come back positive or not?

  19. spicegirl... lol says:

    spice is addictive, and the high is better than weed, however, it causes holes in your brain if you smoke it for any prolonged period of time. they are working on take home testing for it. some people mix it with cocain, and this creates a huge high but is VERY risky. the first time i took it it was mixed with coke and i didn’t know it, but my heart was racing and i got so sick i almost had to go to the hospital. smoke it at your own risk.

  20. Macy says:

    love the shit has smoked it for 2 years no fast heart beat and only smoked marijuana 4 times in my life.

  21. admin says:

    Spice is not tested for in the hair follicles tests we supply. At this time, we are not aware of any hair tests that are testing for spice. There are labs that are testing for spice with urine drug tests and possibly in the future it will be added to hair tests, but not yet.

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  23. bailey says:

    yeah so i smoked about a bowl yesterday of black mamba spice(blueberry) today im soppose to get tested by tasc cause im on diversion but i wana know since itd be only 39 hours since i had last smoked it would it show up? do i have to just wait another day? or drink some water or what i want to smoke it again soon cause i do think its addicting.

  24. Probo sucks says:

    I smoked spice resin and took a drug test the next day and was postive for opiets. I denied it cause i never used any kind of opiet. They sent it to the lab and it said i had over 250 ng of morphine in me. The only thing i did was smoke spice and spice resin. Be careful if your on probo with that shit

  25. Jack says:

    my friend and i have beens smoking this stuff since it came out and i would say that spice is very addictive.. i have been smoking about 4 grams every two days for about a year now and its really hard to stop. i dont even feel the fun anymore but i cant stop. i could stop but id have to be far far away from anyone who smokes it. is the addiction level up there with meth?

  26. Spice beginner XD says:

    Ive smoked spice a couple times and marjiuna both in my opinion are the same exact high but spice hits alot faster but for a shorter amount of time. Also it doesnt have THC which stays in your system for months. Im hearing all kinds of different things about a drug test able to detect spice now and im in the military so it would be very helpful and greatly appreciated if someone could get solid fact if spice if now detactable in urine/blood etc. Drug tests. Thanks!
    Admin you can help to!

  27. admin says:

    Yes there are many tests for spice now available on the market. There is not a test approved by the FDA for home use, but there are plenty of tests available for use by doctors, probation officers and the military. Redwood Toxicology has more information on Spice testing.
    Look at this quote from this article about the Navy
    “In March 2012, the Navy announced that it has begun random testing of urine samples for synthetic chemical compounds like Spice. The Navy’s capacity for testing for designer drugs will continue to expand. During fiscal year 2012 the Navy will invest $1.73 million to test for synthetic chemical compounds and expects to increase that amount to $2.9 million in fiscal year 2013.”
    Confessions of a Navy Spice Users

  28. P. Stoneham says:

    My spouse uses this drug and it has destroyed his brain cells and is destroying our marrage. He has collapsed on the floor several times. In the beginning he would only do it when I was away, but now he does it all the time. It is like he has had a stroke for a few hours after using it. He can’t even figure out how to get shampoo out of a bottle because the damage. He doesn’t shower and has lost so much weight. So, for all you smokers that say it is not harmful “YOU ARE WRONG”. I can’t wait till this is made illegal, hopefully before it kills my husband.

  29. zeke says:

    can any academic programs test for spice? if so, what are they?

  30. Get clean already! in South Florida says:

    If you look back at all these posts, you’ll notice that everyone who says they have smoked “Spice” or tried all have the writing skills of apes! You’re killing yourselves and your future reproductive life. Drop the dope already people and start living your lives. Spice kills as does any drug of abuse.

  31. Nina says:

    Look people spice Is not safe at all take it from me someone who ended up in the ER over it. I smoked spice for a little over 2 years and like most of you that say you smoke it I too thought nothing was wrong with me or spice that is until I received a phone call from one of my good friends who was also smoking the spice. She began to tell me that I needed to stop smoking it right away because what spice does it draws out your organs beging with you kidneys I stopped her right there and broke down crying, because 2 weeks prior to that my girlfriend got really suspicious with my health and began to look up my symptoms (she was unaware I was smoking spice) my girlfriend found a bunch of websites that indicated I had kidney failure all my symptoms matched perfectly. When she brought this to my attention I got defensive and told her I was fine and she was imagining I had these symptoms because I felt fine. So when my friend told me that she went to a dr. And this is what he told her I knew right then and there that my girlfriend wasn’t imagining things and this may very well be my problem I snapped out of denial and realized something was wrong with me. And like I said I broke down she went on to tell me that I need to see a dr. ASAP and tell him the truth about what I was ingesting. I instantly walked over to the dumpster at my apartment complex and threw my pack in as well as my pipe, and promised myself I was going to quit. Well I did just that but 4 days later I could no longer take the burning sensation in my kidneys so I hopped in my car and drove myself to the ER. When I signed in the nurse looked up at me and asked me what the reason for my visit was I told her I thought I had kidney failure she asked why and I told her well my kidneys have burned for 4 days now and I smoked spice for 2 Years. Her eyes opened so wide and said come with me. They immediately checked me in and brought me to the back where they began to run all types of test urine samples, blood work, CAT scans, and the list goes on. Well turns out my kidneys were still at 100% but I had a horrible infection in my kidneys as well as being extremely dehydrated and I had 1% of potassium in my system which could be deadly. My dr. Began to explain to me that theses are all side effects of smoking spice and had I not seeked medical attention I most likely would have died just from the potassium levels in my body being at 1%. Now 3 weeks after quitting I have a slight headache that won’t go away on my right side and a horrible cough full of phlem. So people understand this is not a game nor a joke this can and most likely will happen to you if you don’t quit I too know its hard and I also know that due to jobs drug testing this seems like a great alternative to weed but its everything but that its killing you just take a minute and think about the changes in your attitude think of how uneasy you are all the time axiety kreeping up on u a bit? Are u tired all time? Do u eat when you don’t have your spice? Are you coughing up black shit ? These are only something’s I could go on for days but seriously think about it there’s nothing normal about what your body is going thru so you should seriously consider quitting if not for yourself do it for your friends and family they love you and wouldn’t want to live life without you due to a stupid high that only last a few minutes anyway so don’t wait until its too late do it now!

  32. Jonathan says:

    I smoked spice once and swore i would never do it again. i smoked it with my friend and we were high about 20 minutes. it was a great high so we decided to do it again an hour later. bad fuckin idea. we smoked a bowl and after we finshed i blacked out and woke up at the bottom of a 22 stair staircase.i saw nothing but black and a green wheel (like on a tank) and it was spinning and i had to move my hands and feet along with the wheel, otherwise i thought i would die.there was a sound going along with the wheel and youll find out later what that was… anyway after about 2 minutes of the wheel, my friend erick (who hadnt smoked) came downstairs and yelled my name when he saw me. the black and wheel disappeared and and my friend was coming to help me.. thing was, he was made of bubbles. i couldnt understand anything he said. the everything turned into a cartoon. i couldnt speak, i couldnt move, i had no mental process. after everything turned back to normal view i had a deep deep deep ripping feeling that i was in hell. my friend was trying to talk to me and i understood him but still couldnt do anything. the hell feeling felt like it lasted for hours and i thought i had died and was watching my death because i had missed it because i had blacked out. after more talking from erick, he told me to clench my hands if i could, (he thought i was paralyzed or dead) and magically i could. then i regained the ability to talk. he talk my he was gonna help me stand up but i was insisting that he didnt because i would die (i still thought i was in hell) but he pulled me up and started talking to me and i felt sort of better but i was still high. he told me my face was really bad and we had to go upstairs and wash it off but i didnt know what he meant because i didnt know what happened. so he helps me upstairs to the bathroom and i look in the mirror and my face is covered in blood. i had a gash right next to the bone around my right eye. it was bleeding terribly. so eventually i make it to the hospital and the doctor says i was a quarter inch from hitting my temple in which i would have died. i ended up getting 7 large stitches and a totally bruised face and swollen black eye for 4 days and broke the bone around my eye in 2 places. ( i hit a post/banister that is at the bottom of the stairs directly with my head) DO NOT MESS AROUND WITH SPICE. IF YOU FEEL THE NEED TO SMOKE, SMOKE WEED. nobody will ever understand how intense the feelings were from that stuff unless youve went through what i did. btw, my friend ted who smoked with me had his own experience but he was upstairs and thats a story for another time. but none the less stay away from THIS!!!

  33. leahcar says:

    Jonathon sounds like you smoked salvia not spice…

    I’ve recently started smoking spice after getting in trouble. I can’t smoke ganja or else I would. I’ve been reading mixed reviews on drug testing for spice. It seems the military tests because they have the money for it. But will an outpatient UA test for it? I know I shouldn’t be doing it in the first place but I just wanted to try it and it isn’t that bad for me.