Opioid abuse is at an all time high, and medical marijuana's potential to help combat this epidemic is in the center of legalization and reform debates. Various studies suggest medical marijuana is effective at reducing opioid use. Last year, researchers from John Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health found states that have implemented medical marijuana programs have an estimated 25% fewer opioid-related deaths than states that have not. Not surprisingly, another study that was published in Health Affairs found that states with medical marijuana witnessed a decrease in prescriptions of often-abused opioids.
Patients and physicians alike are noticing that medical marijuana offers symptom relief as effective to that of opioids without the threat of adverse side effects, overdose, or even death. Additionally, a review of over 10,000 medical marijuana studies dating back to 1999 found evidence supporting the use of marijuana for chronic pain. However, authors of the study, which was conducted by the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine, noted the need for additional investigation of the long-term effects of marijuana use.
This information has been provided by Merry Jane and approved by our Chief Medical Officer.