Medicine

Studies suggest marijuana legalization linked to lower rates of opiate prescribing

Studies suggest marijuana legalization linked to lower rates of opiate prescribing

The studies revealed that states with medical marijuana had 2.2 million fewer doses of opioids prescribed per year.

In light of this, both recently published studies provide some of the first credible research to support the idea that medical or recreational marijuana legalization may cut prescriptions, which could in turn help assuage the opioid crisis. Compared to states where cannabis was banned, states where medical marijuana was legal averaged 3.7 million fewer opioid doses annually, while states that permitted only home cultivation of marijuana had 1.8 million fewer doses.

The researchers can not say if people switched from opioid prescriptions to using a medical marijuana product.

"This study adds one more brick in the wall in the argument that cannabis clearly has medical applications", said David Bradford, professor of public administration and policy at the University of Georgia. A wider range of consumers are aware of the medical benefits related to cannabis, particularly for patients dealing with cancer, diabetes, and chronic pain.

The opioid crisis is tragic and has been devastating for many Rhode Island families, and a new study says the costs of the crisis is hitting all Rhode Island hard from an expense standpoint.

More than 90 Americans a day die from opioid overdose now, resulting in more than 42,000 deaths per year, according to the US Centres for Disease Control and Prevention.

More news: 'False news' promos put Sinclair in spotlight

The studies couldn't prove cause and effect.

"I did a back-of-the-envelope calculation that suggested that a daily pain management dose of hydrocodone would be about $10 out of pocket in the U.S", Bradford said, although Medicare Part D plans cover much of that. Dr Malani notes that given that 70% of respondents said they would definitely or probably ask about marijuana if faced with a serious medical condition, healthcare providers should be ready to answer questions and provide counseling.

At the same time, Hill says medical marijuana should not be given a lead role in treating chronic pain.

And there's evidence cannabis can fight pain.

Forty-five percent of those surveyed strongly supported and 35% somewhat supported allowing medical marijuana use only with a doctor's recommendation, while 20% said they did not support use of medical marijuana.

"Our finding that the lower opioid prescribing rates associated with adult-use marijuana laws were pronounced in Schedule II opioids further suggest that reaching these individuals may have greater potential to reduce the adverse consequences, such as opioid use disorder and overdose".


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