A new open-ended interview based study from researchers at DePaul and Rush Universities in Illinois, suggests medical marijuana may supplement or replace pharmaceutical medications. The researchers interviewed 30 daily medical marijuana users with a mean age of 44 in Illinois, and then sifted through the data to find patterns and themes throughout medical marijuana patients in the state. The patients all suffered from conditions approved by the state for medical marijuana use, which include rheumatoid arthritis, Crohn’s disease, spinal cord injury/disease, and cancer. Patients either used medical marijuana as an alternative to prescription or over-the-counter medications, as a way to wean off current medications, or as a supplement to their treatment regimen.
Authors write, “Motives reported for reducing or eliminating prescription medications included concerns regarding toxicity, dependence, and tolerance, and perceptions that [medical cannabis] improves management of certain symptoms and has quicker action and longer lasting effects... Legal access to cannabis may reduce the use of multiple classes of dangerous prescription medications in certain patient populations… [A] shift from prescriptions for other scheduled drugs to cannabis may result in less frequent interactions with our conventional healthcare system and potentially improved patient health.”
This study supports previous studies surrounding medical marijuana and its effects on prescription medication use. This information has been provided by Medical Marijuana Inc. and approved by our Chief Medical Officer.