PITTSBURGH — A Pennsylvania eighth-grader who became ill after smoking synthetic marijuana and had a double lung transplant has died.
Tonya Rice tells the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review that her 13-year-old son, Brandon, died Thursday morning at Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh at UPMC.
The boy smoked the fake marijuana out of a plastic PEZ candy dispenser. The chemicals in the drugs caused extensive damage to his lungs. Brandon was put on a respirator in June and had a double lung transplant in September.
The boy’s mother says anti-rejection drugs he’d taken since the transplants weakened his immune system and made him unable to fight a recent infection.
Gov. Tom Corbett signed a law outlawing such substances in Pennsylvania a few days after the boy smoked the substances. The ban took effect in August.