By Associated Press,
ALBUQUERQUE, NM — The lawful availability of medical marijuana could reduce opioid use among chronic pain patients, University of New Mexico researchers said in research recently published in the journal PLOS ONE.
The work of associate psychology professor Jacob Miguel Vigil and assistant economics professor Sarah See Stith indicated there was a strong correlation between enrollment in the state’s medical pot program and cessation or reduction of opioid use.
A significant proportion of patients substituted cannabis for their opioid prescriptions, informal surveys showed according to Vigil. The study tracked 37 habitual opioid using, chronic pain patients who enrolled in the state medical marijuana program between 2010 and 2015, compared to 29 patients with similar health conditions who didn’t enroll.
As of October, more than 44,000 people were enrolled in the state program.