Studies Show Evidence that Medical Marijuana Could Replace Opioids
First Harvest Financial
Every year, millions of Americans are prescribed opioid painkillers. No matter if its Percocet, Fentanyl, or Vicodin, opioids increase patients’ risk of dependence, addiction, and overdose. The lives and money spent on American opioid addiction in the last 15 years, has led health experts to serve for a less dangerous form of pain relief—they may have found their answer in medical marijuana.
Using marijuana to cope with chronic pain is nothing new, but serious research on the topic is. Marcus Bachhuber, assistant professor of medicine at the Montefiore Medical Center in New York City, led a study that examined the relationship between states’ cannabis legalization policies and its number of opioid deaths. The study found that between 1999 and 2010, states that have legalized medical marijuana had an average 25 percent fewer annual opioid deaths than states that continue to prohibit medical marijuana use.
Though Bachhuber’s study could not attribute the fewer opioid deaths directly to marijuana use, it nonetheless opened the minds of medical professionals about a potential solution to the opioid epidemic.