Study: Cannabis Use Associated with Lower Mortality Risk Among Patients Co-Infected With HIV/HCV

Paris, France: The use of cannabis among patients co-infected with HIV and the hepatitis C virus (HCV) is associated with a reduced mortality risk, according to data published in the journal AIDS and Behavior.

A team of French and Brazilian investigators evaluated the association between psychoactive substance use and both HCV and non-HCV mortality in HIV/HCV co-infected patients over a five-year period. After adjusting for potential confounding factors, they reported, "Regular/daily cannabis use, elevated coffee intake, and not currently smoking [tobacco] were independently associated with reduced HCV-mortality. … [P]otential benefits of cannabis-based therapies [should be] investigated."

Separate studies have reported an association between a history of cannabis use and reduced in-hospital mortality in patients suffering from acute pancreatitis, heart attacks, and traumatic brain injury, among other conditions.

For more information, contact Paul Armentano, NORML Deputy Director. Full text of the study, "HCV-related mortality among HIV/HCV co-infected patients: The importance of behaviors in the HCV cure era," appears in AIDS and Behavior.