Study Finds Big Surprise Among Medical Marijuana Patients

Having to deal with a medical problem for an extended period of time can be depressing and debilitating. Over 40 million people in the United States and Canada are limited in their usual activities due to one or more chronic illnesses. Several studies have shown that MC helps reduce opioid dosage in patients undergoing treatment for non-cancer pain. It can also be used instead of opioids to provide therapeutic benefits. Managing pain can be helped… but now a study finds there's a key that's more holistic for medical marijuana patients.

Johns Hopkins researchers worked with Realm of Caring, a nonprofit organization dedicated to therapeutic marijuana research, and collected data from 1,276 patients affiliated with the organization. Among the participants, 808 patients consumed medical marijuana products and 468 patients served as a control group.

Patients were asked about their quality of life, sleep habits, pain symptoms, mental health status, current use of non-marijuana medications, and underlying health status. Those who used medical marijuana experienced significant improvements in quality of life and health satisfaction compared to the control group. They also reported fewer pain, depression and anxiety symptoms than non-users. Finally, they took fewer prescription medications and went to the hospital less often than their peers.

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“This study clearly shows that cannabinoids have a very positive impact on health outcomes across all ages and populations. “This publication will be the first of many based on the detailed results of this extensive data set,” said Jonathan Hoggard, CEO of Realm of Caring. “Perhaps the most dramatic finding of this study was that medical cannabis use was associated with 39% fewer emergency room visits and 46% fewer hospitalizations.”

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The control group included patients interested in exploring potential therapeutic benefits of medical marijuana. The researchers found that some of them began using medical marijuana during the study and subsequently reported improvements in their health and well-being.

“People felt better when they started. “That’s a strong signal,” said study author Ryan Vandrey.

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The article notes that biases and pre-existing beliefs about marijuana should be taken into account among both patients and researchers. Although this is the first step in research, it is an indication of additional benefits of medical marijuana.

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