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Trends in alcohol-induced deaths in the United States, 2000-2016

2/21/20--A serial cross-sectional study using US mortality data from 2000 to 2016 found large increases in alcohol-induced death rates across age and racial/ethnic subgroups of the US population, which have accelerated over recent years. Large increases in alcohol-induced deaths among younger age groups may be associated with future increases in alcohol-related disease. Read

Dose-ranging effect of adjunctive oral cannabidiol vs placebo on convulsive seizure frequency in Dravet Syndrome

3/2/20--Adjunctive cannabidiol at doses of 10 and 20 mg/kg/d led to similar clinically relevant reductions in convulsive seizure frequency with a better safety and tolerability profile for the 10-mg/kg/d dose in children with treatment-resistant Dravet syndrome. Dose increases of cannabidiol to greater than 10 mg/kg/d should be tailored to individual efficacy and safety. Read

Prevalence of electronic cigarette use among adolescents in New Jersey and association with social factors

2/12/20--In a survey study of 4183 respondents examining factors associated with use of electronic cigarettes (e-cigarettes), including JUUL, among high school students, inclusion of a JUUL use measure produced higher estimates of current use than assessing the use of e-cigarettes or JUUL alone, and 88.8% of youth reported using the JUUL brand. In addition, current use of other tobacco products, endorsing a tobacco brand on social media, having tobacco-branded merchandise, having close friends who used JUUL, and seeing JUUL used on school grounds were significantly associated with current and frequent e-cigarette use, inclusive of JUUL. Read

Medical Cannabis

2/11/20--Medical cannabis refers to preparations of the cannabis plant that patients use to treat medical conditions, and it has been used for medicinal purposes for thousands of years by many civilizations. As of January 2020, 33 states and the District of Columbia had put laws into place so physicians can certify the use of “medical marijuana,” or medical cannabis, for debilitating medical conditions—although cannabis remains illegal federally. Read

What should I know about medical cannabis?

2/11/20--The JAMA Internal Medicine Patient Page outlines pertinent details about medical marijuana, it's use, the dangers, and how it's regulated in the United States. Read 

Can cannabis cure cancer?

1/16/20--As published in JAMA Oncology, a thorough review by the US National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine found moderate evidence of no statistical association between cannabis use and the development of lung and head and neck cancers. Furthermore, limited evidence of a statistical association was found between cannabis use and the development of nonseminomatous testicular carcinomas without good support for a causative effect. Read

e-Cigarette use among youth in the United States, 2019

11/5/19--In a cross-sectional survey conducted in 2019 that included 19,018 participants to examine the estimated frequency of the current (past 30-day) use of e-cigarettes among US high school and middle school students in 2019, the findings indicate that the prevalence of self-reported current e-cigarette use was high among US high school and middle school students. Read

Cannabidiol products are everywhere, but should people be using them?

11/20/19--Although the CBD market has exploded in recent months, with products ranging from bath salts to coffee and tea to maple bacon–flavored dog biscuits, research suggests that many actually do not contain CBD. And the compound’s murky status raises a host of questions: Is it safe? Is it effective? Is it legal? Is it a dietary supplement or a drug? Read

Association between recreational marijuana legalization in the United States and changes in marijuana use and cannabis use disorder from 2008 to 2016

11/13/19--Findings in a multilevel, difference-in-difference survey study with 505 796 respondents comparing marijuana use before and after the legalization of recreational marijuana in the United States, revealed that the proportion of respondents aged 12 to 17 years reporting cannabis use disorder increased from 2.18% to 2.72%, while the proportion of respondents 26 years or older reporting frequent marijuana use increased from 2.13% to 2.62% and those with cannabis use disorder, from 0.90% to 1.23%. Read

The opioid crisis, corporate responsibility, and lessons from the tobacco master settlement agreement

11/1/19--The opioid crisis has accounted for 770 000 deaths in the United States over the past 20 years, and this crisis has contributed to the decline in US overall life expectancy for 3 consecutive years. Responsibility for holding corporations accountable for their role in the opioid epidemic—and ensuring they contribute to solutions—falls primarily to state attorneys general who are responsible for protecting the public and can act individually or as a group through lawsuits or negotiations when public health is threatened. Read

A national survey of marijuana use among US adults with medical conditions, 2016-2017

9/20/19--This survey study using data from 169,036 participants in the 2016 and 2017 Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System surveys found that, compared with adults without medical conditions, adults with medical conditions had a significantly higher prevalence of current and daily marijuana use, were more likely to report using marijuana for medical reasons, and were less likely to report using marijuana for recreational purposes. Read

Cannabis inhalation and voice disorders

8/8/19--In a systematic review of 6 human studies and 13 basic science and animal studies, cannabis inhalation was associated with dark vocal folds on laryngoscopy as well as respiratory symptoms and negative lung function changes attributable to degradation byproducts generated during smoke exposure, especially in large doses. Read

Medical use of cannabis in 2019

8/9/19--As of August 2019, 33 states and the District of Columbia have initiated policies allowing the use of cannabis or cannabinoids for the management of specific medical conditions. Yet, insufficient evidence exists for the use of medical cannabis for most conditions for which its use is advocated. Despite the lack of evidence, various US state governments have recommended cannabis for the management of more than 50 medical conditions. Read

Acute effects of smoked and vaporized cannabis in healthy adults who infrequently use marijuana

11/30/18--Significant, sometimes adverse, drug effects can occur at relatively low THC doses in infrequent marijuana users, and accordingly this data should be considered with regard to regulation of retail marijuana products and education for individuals initiating marijuana use. Read

Alcohol, cigarette, and marijuana use between 2002 and 2016 in pregnant women from a nationally representative sample

11/5/18--In the National Survey of Drug Use and Health, the adjusted prevalence of past 30-day cannabis use in pregnant women aged 18 to 44 years rose from 2.37% in 2002 to 3.85% in 2014. Another study found a relatively similar increase from 4.2% in 2009 to 7.1% in 2014. Corresponding rates of alcohol use and cigarette smoking during pregnancy have generally decreased. These reports encourage more detailed characterization of patterns of substance use during the course of pregnancy. Read

Effect of cannabidiol on medial temporal, midbrain, and striatal dysfunction in people at clinical high risk of psychosis

11/8/18--In this investigation comparing 33 individuals at clinical high risk of psychosis who were part of a double-blind randomized clinical trial and 19 healthy control individuals, a single oral dose of cannabidiol modulated activation in the striatum, medial temporal cortex, and midbrain. In each of these regions, the level of activation following administration of cannabidiol to patients at clinical high risk of psychosis was intermediate between the response in healthy control individuals who did not receive any drug and in patients at clinical high risk receiving placebo. Read

Combustible and electronic tobacco and marijuana products in hip-hop music videos

10/15/18--Combustible and electronic tobacco and marijuana use frequently occurred in popular hip-hop music videos from 2013 to 2017. The genre’s broad appeal, use of branded products by influential artists, and rise of electronic product and marijuana use may contribute to a growing public health concern of tobacco and marijuana use. Read

Health, polysubstance use, and criminal justice involvement among adults with opioid use

7/6/18--In this cross-sectional analysis, individuals who reported any level of opioid use were more likely than individuals who reported no opioid use to have physical and mental health conditions and co-occurring substance use. Involvement in the criminal justice system increased with intensity of opioid use, and any level of opioid use was significantly associated with involvement in the criminal justice system in the past year. Read

Prevalence of fetal alcohol spectrum disorders in 4 US communities

2/6/18--Estimated prevalence of fetal alcohol spectrum disorders among first-graders in 4 communities in the Rocky Mountain, Midwestern, Southeastern, and Pacific Southwestern regions of the United States ranged from 1.1% to 5.0% using a conservative approach. These findings may represent more accurate US prevalence estimates than previous studies but may not be generalizable to all communities. Read

Implications of higher than expected prevalence of fetal alcohol spectrum disorders

2/6/18--Fetal alcohol spectrum disorders are a group of serious, chronic, systemic diseases that are caused by prenatal alcohol exposure and characterized by central nervous system damage and physical deficits that subsequently lead to a wide range of permanent and lifelong health consequences. A study featured in JAMA reports the prevalence of fetal alcohol spectrum estimates are 10 times higher than those previously reported. However, the authors caution that their findings may not be generalized to all US communities, but also suggested that their estimates are likely more accurate than previously reported estimates for the United States. Read

FDA pursues unproven cancer claims

12/19/17--Four companies have received FDA warning letters for selling products online that agency officials said made unproven anticancer claims and contained a component of the marijuana plant. The products reportedly contained cannabidiol (CBD), which isn’t FDA approved for any indication. Read