Study: Medical marijuana use could curb opioid epidemic

Posted: Updated:
EDISON -

A new study by the National Academy of Sciences finds that people may avoid dangerous, addictive drugs when they choose to use medical marijuana to treat pain.

Patients who experience chronic pain were often prescribed opioid-based drugs, which could lead to addiction.

Opioid addiction is a major issue in New Jersey with former Gov. Chris Christie and current Gov. Phil Murphy attempting to tackle the issue.

“Approximately 3,000 deaths in 2018,” says Linda Carroll with St. Peter’s University Hospital. “It affects all people, all ages, all income, all ethnicity.”

But Carroll says that the common threads when it comes to any kind of addiction are “environmental issues can play a part, behavioral health issues can play a part, whether there’s a history of anxiety, depression.”

The study did suggest that those who are treated with medical marijuana are less likely to become addicted to opioids. But Carroll does caution that “the key to success is prevention.”

Researchers note that the findings are preliminary. They say that the link between medical marijuana and opioid use is still unclear.

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