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Study: Medical Marijuana Has Potential To Lessen Opioid Addictions

A recent study by the University of New Mexico suggests that medicinal marijuana could help fight the opioid epidemic.

A recent study by the University of New Mexico suggests that medicinal marijuana could help fight the opioid epidemic. Every day, about 100 Americans die of an opioid overdose. They are the leading cause of preventable death in the US.

 

Medical Marijuana Has Potential To Lessen Opioid Addictions

A recent study by the University of New Mexico suggests that medicinal marijuana could help fight the opioid epidemic. Every day, about 100 Americans die of an opioid overdose. They are the leading cause of preventable death in the US.

The study “Associations between Cannabis as Medicine and Prescription Opioids in Chronic Pain Patients: A Preliminary Cohort Study” has now been published in the journal PLOS ONE.

The results of this preliminary study show a strong correlation between enrollment in the New Mexico Medical Cannabis Program (MCP) and reduction of opioid use. Medical marijuana could serve as an alternative to opioids.

The study involved 37 patients with chronic pain who chose New Mexico’s cannabis program and 29 patients with similar illnesses who did not enroll in the cannabis program. Subjects using cannabis as a medicine showed a 47% reduction in daily opioid dose.

In the 21-month follow-up period, subjects who did not consume medicinal marijuana were even found to have a 10% increase in daily opioid dosing.

Dr. Jacob Miguel Vigil, head of the study, commented on the results of the study:

“Our findings underscore the need for a broader review of the potential use of cannabis as a replacement for opioid analgesics, particularly in the form of placebo-based randomized controlled trials and larger observational studies.”

Further, Vigil elaborated:

“If cannabis can serve as an alternative to prescription opioids for at least some patients, legislators and the medical community might consider the cannabis program as a potential tool to combat the current opioid epidemic.”

One year after enrollment in the program, a survey of patients participating in the medical cannabis program reported improvements in pain reduction, quality of life and social life, level of activity and concentration, and few negative side effects from cannabis use for one year after inclusion in the cannabis program.

Sources:

https://news.unm.edu/news/study-finds-medical-cannabis-is-effective-at-reducing-opioid-addiction

https://www.ganjapreneur.com/university-of-new-mexico-study-finds-mmj-program-enrollees-decrease-opioid-use/

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