Most in US think cannabis has health benefits, despite lack of data – study

By July 26, 2018 Recent News

The Guardian 23 July 2018
Family First Comment: Well, this is interesting timing – and could have “NZ” in the title!!
“She attributes the gaps between public perception and proven science largely to commercialization of the drug in several US states, which has led to advertising and media coverage. To pro-cannabis activists, the lack of traditional research lends credibility to anecdotal evidence, or allows them to point to research on animals or from pre-clinical lab studies not normally used to demonstrated a substance’s medical benefits for humans.”
Sounds very familiar.

Survey respondents believe drug can alleviate various ailments, even as scientists call out for more research

Americans believe marijuana is helpful in treating a variety of health problems despite a lack of available evidence supporting it, a new survey found.

The results, to be published in the upcoming issue of the Annals of Internal Medicine, show the most respondents believe smoking marijuana can help with pain management and then MS. Just under half believe it can relieve insomnia, anxiety and depression, ailments for which marijuana’s efficacy and safety have not been established by scientists.

“They believe things that we have no data for,” said the study’s lead author, Dr Salomeh Keyhani, a professor of general internal medicine at the University of California San Francisco medical school.

Of the 16,000 respondents to the online survey, 14.6% said they had used marijuana in the past year, lower than in the country at large, according to a 2017 survey.

In the US, marijuana’s unique legal situation complicates efforts to study and obtain accurate information about the drug’s harms and benefits.

According to the US Drug Enforcement Administration, the agency responsible for drug law enforcement, marijuana is a schedule I drug, meaning that it has serious risks and no medical benefits. Other drugs in this category include heroin and LSD.

This restricted status makes it difficult for scientists to study marijuana, especially its health benefits.

Americans’ view of Marijuana is rosy and unscientific
Reuters 24 July 2018
Americans seem to have developed a very rosy view of marijuana that isn’t backed up by science, a new study suggests.

A nationally representative online survey of 16,280 U.S. adults found that many ascribe health benefits to marijuana that haven’t been proven, researchers report in Annals of Internal Medicine.

“The American public has a much more favorable point of view than is warranted by the evidence,” said the study’s lead author, Dr. Salomeh Keyhani of the University of California, San Francisco. “Perhaps most concerning is that they think that it prevents health problems.”

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