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Study: Patients Substituting Cannabis For Anxiety Medications

Thursday, 14 February 2019

Hamilton, Ontario: Patients with anxiety disorders report obtaining subjective relief from cannabis and often substitute it in place of conventional prescription drugs, according to data published in the Journal of Psychiatric Research.

A team of Canadian researchers surveyed over 2,000 patients registered in Health Canada's medical marijuana access program. Forty-four percent of participants reported using cannabis to treat symptoms of anxiety, and 92 percent said that it "improved their symptoms." Authors also reported that approximately half of the respondents reported substituting cannabis in place of either a psychiatric medication or a non-psychiatric medication prescribed by their physician.

The studies' findings are consistent with numerous other papers -- such as those here, here, here, here, and here -- documenting the use of cannabis in place of a variety of prescription drugs, particularly opioids and anti-anxiety medications.

For more information, contact Paul Armentano, NORML Deputy Director, at: paul@norml.org. Full text of the study, "Cannabis use behaviors and prevalence of anxiety and depressive symptoms in a cohort of Canadian medicinal cannabis users," appears in the Journal of Psychiatric Research.