Charleston, SC: Marijuana smoking is not associated with an elevated risk of coronary artery disease (CAD aka heart disease) in young to middle age adults, according to data published in the journal PLOS One.
A team of investigators affiliated with the Medical University of South Carolina and the University of Texas assessed the relationship between CAD and self-reported cannabis use in 1,420 subjects. Participants in the study were all between the ages of 18 and 50, had experienced chest pain, and underwent a coronary CT angiography.
Researchers reported that subjects with a history of cannabis use were less likely to show evidence of CAD as compared to subjects with no cannabis exposure. Marijuana using subjects also tended to be younger and were less likely to suffer from either hypertension or diabetes.
"The results demonstrate a relatively low frequency of CAD in a younger, marijuana-using patient subgroup," authors concluded,
Their findings are similar to those of a longitudinal trial which found, "Neither cumulative lifetime nor recent use of marijuana is associated with the incidence of CVD (cardiovascular disease) in middle age."
Full text of the study, "Marijuana use and coronary artery disease in young adults," appears in PLOS One.