Can medical marijuana help to fight the opioid epidemic? Many believe that it can. But a new study finds that people who use medical marijuana actually have higher rates of medical and non-medical prescription drug use — including pain relievers. The study appears in the Journal of Addiction Medicine, the official journal of the American Society of Addiction Medicine (ASAM), published by Wolters Kluwer.
Rather than being at lower risk, people who use medical marijuana may be at higher risk for non-medical prescription drug use, suggests the study by Theodore L. Caputi, BS of University College Cork’s School of Public Health and Keith Humphreys, PhD, of Stanford University. However, an accompanying commentary questions whether medical cannabis is the cause of higher prescription drug use, or whether other factors explain the association.