April 3, 2018

Legalizing Cannabis Could Offset Opioid Crisis, New Studies Suggest

April 3, 2018
drew-taylor-7yty0M7XnYU-unsplash
Medical cannabis laws are associated with significant reductions in opioid prescribing in the Medicare Part D population

Legal Marijuana Reduces Opioid Addiciton

Medical cannabis experts and scientists have been saying it for a long time, now the American Medical Association is chiming in. And we quote: “Medical cannabis laws are associated with significant reductions in opioid prescribing in the Medicare Part D population.”

A paper done by researchers at the University of Georgia, Athens, stated that this finding “was particularly strong in states that permit dispensaries, and for reductions in hydrocodone and morphine prescriptions.”

A second study, from the University of Kentucky and Emory University also noted that: “marijuana is one of the potential nonopioid alternatives that can relieve pain at a relatively lower risk of addiction and virtually no risk of overdose.”

The two papers, published Monday by JAMA Internal Medicine, found that “The potential of marijuana liberalization to reduce the use and consequences of prescription opioids among Medicaid enrollees deserves consideration during the policy discussions about marijuana reform and the opioid epidemic.”

Is this potential getting consideration in policy discussions about cannabis and the opioid epidemic?

Sadly, the answer is no because those lawmakers in charge of dealing with the crisis that kills, on average, 115 American per day don’t believe in science and seem to have an irrational rejection of marijuana’s proven benefits.

The University of Georgia study also showed that while MMJ is associated with reduced opioid prescriptions, recreational laws have an even greater effect.

“State implementation of medical marijuana laws was associated with a 5.88% lower rate of opioid prescribing,” the authors wrote, and in states with legal recreational cannabis, there was a 6.38% lower rate of opioid prescribing.

Can it be any clearer?

“This study adds one more brick in the wall in the argument that cannabis clearly has medical applications,” said David Bradford, professor at the University of Georgia and a lead author of the Medicare study.

“And for pain patients in particular, our work adds to the argument that cannabis can be effective.”

Opioid overdose has risen dramatically over the past 15 years and has been implicated in over 500,000 deaths since 2000, more than the number of Americans killed in World War II.

Share:

Share on facebook
Facebook
Share on twitter
Twitter
Share on pinterest
Pinterest
Share on reddit
Reddit
Recent & Related Posts

Articles

Recent & Related Posts
Medical
Mark Willey

Missouri Green Doctors

Since voters passed Amendment 2 with an overwhelming majority in 2018, Missouri has become a new medical marijuana landscape and has seen approximately 50,000 patients

Read More »
Medical
Ryan Quinones

Hemp Missouri

Missourians have been growing hemp as a staple crop dating back to the early-nineteenth century. American farmers grew hemp all over the country and manufactured

Read More »
Missouri Sneate Bill 491 took decriminalization one step further in the Show-Me-State.
Medical
Brodie Kush

Missouri Senate Bill 491

Missouri is now a legal medical marijuana state, but six years ago in 2014, the Missouri legislature was able to pass SB 491 a modified,

Read More »
Medical
Ryan Quinones

Missouri Marijuana Laws

Over the past couple years, Missouri has been rapidly amping up its efforts to overturn drug war era policies and replace them with a regulated 

Read More »
Medical
John Payne

Missouri Marijuana Legalization

11 states have legalized recreational marijuana, and another 22 states, plus the District of Columbia, have legalized medical cannabis. So,  here’s where things stand here

Read More »