AND ALCOHOL MAY TRIGGER ALCOHOLISM – 

Mar. 18, 2022 –  “In this first study of patients randomized to obtain medical marijuana cards, we learned there can be negative consequences to using cannabis for medical purposes. People with pain, anxiety or depression symptoms failed to report any improvements, though those with insomnia experienced improved sleep.” Particularly disturbing to Gilman was the fact individuals with symptoms of anxiety or depression — the most common conditions for which medical cannabis is sought — were most vulnerable to developing cannabis use disorder. CUD symptoms include the need for more cannabis to overcome drug tolerance and continued use despite physical or psychological problems caused by the cannabis.

MGH researchers began their trial in 2017 with 269 adults (average age of 37) from the Greater Boston area who were interested in obtaining a medical marijuana card. One group was allowed to get MMCs immediately, while the second group, designed to serve as a control, was asked to wait 12 weeks before obtaining a card. Both groups were tracked over 12 weeks. The team found that the odds of developing CUD were nearly two times higher in the MMC cohort than in the wait list control group, and that by week 12, 10 percent of the MMC group had developed a CUD diagnosis, with the number rising to 20 percent in those seeking a card for anxiety or depression.

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