Is THC-O Legal in Wisconsin?


Is THC-O Legal in Wisconsin?

Yes. Although marijuana is illegal in Wisconsin, the state has a growing market for hemp products containing no more than 0.3% THC, including hemp-derived cannabinoids like THC-O. However, as stipulated in House Bill 0171, only adults aged 21 years or older can legally possess or use THC-O and other hemp derivatives permitted under state law. A good number of CBD stores sell THC-O-infused products online in Wisconsin.

What is THC-O?

Tetrahydrocannabinol-O-acetate or THC-O is a synthetic form of THC produced in the lab as it is not naturally present in the hemp or marijuana plant. First, CBD is extracted from hemp with no more than 0.3% THC content, as required by the federal 2018 Farm Bill. The CBD extract is then converted to Delta-8 THC, which, in turn, must be mixed with acetic anhydride to create THC-O. The extraction process often eliminates all flavonoids and terpenes in the resulting THC isolate (THC-O). THC-O is a psychoactive compound that binds strongly with cannabinoid receptors in the brain and body, producing a very strong "high". It is believed to be more potent than the more familiar Delta-8 THC and Delta-9 THC.

Commonly sold THC-O forms include edibles like gummies and chocolate, oil, flowers, tinctures, and vapes. THC-O-based products are safe for human consumption when used in moderate doses. Consuming them in very large amounts can lead to unpleasant effects. Nevertheless, experts warn against smoking THC-O products because they contain acetic anhydride. Heating THC-O has been linked to severe lung disease, so it is best to consume it as edibles and the other available forms. Regular consumers say THC-O is at least three times stronger than Delta-9 THC and four to five times more potent than Delta-8 THC. Potential benefits of THC-O include energy boosting, pain relief, and anti-anxiety effects.

Is THC-O Legal Under Federal Law?

No, THC-O is illegal under the United States law. The general assumption was that Delta-8 THC-O and Delta-9 THC-O are legal under the 2018 Farm Bill until February 2023. In response to a North Carolina attorney who inquired about the legal status of THC-O under federal law, the United States Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), via a letter, affirmed the cannabinoid is illegal. The DEA clarified that THC-O is not naturally contained in hemp like Delta-9 THC and Delta-8 THC but can only be obtained synthetically. As a result, the DEA affirmed that THC-O, being a synthetic compound, is a controlled substance and prohibited under federal law.

How Long Does THC-O Last in the Body?

How long THC-O lasts in the body depends on several factors. However, it usually takes between 3 to 8 hours for the psychoactive effects of THC-O to disappear after use, depending on how much was ingested. After consumption, THC-O is metabolized in the body. The major metabolite, 11-hydroxy-THC, remains in the body long after the psychoactive effects have all cleared out. The precise duration is determined by factors such as the frequency of use, the potency of the product, and the product form consumed. Generally, 11-hydroxy-THC can stay in the body for up to 30 days.

Can You Fail a Drug Test From Using THC-O?

Yes, it is possible to fail a drug test after taking a THC-O product because THC-O metabolites can show up on a drug test for cannabis. Typically, drug tests look for metabolites created after consuming THC. So, THC-O metabolized into 11-hydroxy-THC will produce a positive result on a drug test. However, the detection window for this metabolite depends on various factors including the user's body metabolic rate, consumption frequency, body fat percentage, and the testing method.

Depending on the frequency of consumption, a urine test can detect 11-hydroxy-THC in the body between 15 and 30 days. Blood tests may only detect the presence of THC metabolites for up to about 48 hours after the last use. A saliva test's detection window for THC-O is between 2 and 5 days. On the other hand, hair follicle tests can detect THC metabolites in a person's system for up to 90 days after the last consumption.

THC-O vs Delta-8 THC

Delta-8 THC is a naturally occurring psychoactive compound in the hemp plant, while THC-O, which is also psychoactive, may only be obtained synthetically. The high produced by Delta-8 THC is milder than that of THC-O. Most consumers have confirmed that THC-O is roughly four to five times stronger than Delta-8 THC, providing noticeably stronger effects. While Delta-8 THC provides feelings of relaxation and euphoria, THC-O, being a more potent compound, has been reported to provide psychedelic effects.

Although the research on THC-O is limited, reports from consumers suggest that THC-O may be beneficial in many areas. For instance, it may help with mood-boosting, mental relaxation, pain and inflammation management, stress relief, and appetite stimulation. It can also provide anti-nausea and anti-anxiety effects. Similarly, Delta-8 THC can help with pain relief, increased appetite, improved mental outlook, good sleep, relaxation, and prevention of nausea associated with cancer. Despite their potential health benefits, they also have some drawbacks. THC-O can cause hallucinations, seizures, dizziness, anxiety, vomiting, and sedation if used inappropriately. The side effects of Delta-8 THC include drowsiness, red eyes, low blood pressure, rapid heart rate, and dry mouth.

THC-O vs Delta-9

Unlike THC-O, Delta-9 THC exists naturally in large amounts in hemp. THC-O can only be synthesized in the lab, as it does not occur naturally in the hemp plant. While both are psychoactive compounds, anecdotal evidence suggests that TCH-O is three times more potent than Delta-9 THC. Their intoxicating effects stem from their interaction with the CB1 receptors in the brain.

Both compounds have a range of therapeutic benefits and can help improve appetite, relieve pain, protect and heal nerves, and reduce the symptoms of depression. They also have some side effects, which are mostly dosage-dependent. When taken in large amounts, THC-O can lead to increased heart rate, headaches, short-term memory impairment, confusion, and problems of coordination. Similarly, consuming large quantities of Delta-9 THC can lead to dry eyes, dry mouth, low blood pressure, increased anxiety, and paranoia.

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