Legal Marijuana Use and Opioid Addiction
In the last decade or so, there has been much talk in the United States
about legalizing (or at least decriminalizing) marijuana. With lawmakers
and politicians speaking up about the current opioid epidemic, many pro-pot
advocates are currently attempting to sway legislators toward marijuana
legalization by claiming that access to marijuana would prevent opioid
abuse and addiction.
However, some evidence would suggest the opposite:
Reuters article points out, “An estimated 60 percent of Americans now live in the
28 states and Washington, D.C. where medical marijuana is legal under
state law. Meanwhile, the opioid epidemic - sparked by a quadrupling since
1999 in sales of prescription painkillers such as Oxycontin and Vicodin
- kills 91 Americans a day.”
- A study by the National Academies found links between marijuana use and
a heightened risk of vehicle accidents, suggesting the opioid-related
death may be traded for another life-threatening risk if drug users turn
from opioids to pot.
study by Yuyan Shi at the Department of Family Medicine and Public Health at the University of California in San Diego found that there is some
correlation between reduced opioid-related death and access to non-deadly
or addictive marijuana, but also claimed that “future investigation
is needed to explore the causal pathways of these findings.”
In short, the nature of the relationship and seeming correlations between
legal access to marijuana and lesser risk of abusing opioid pain medications
is not yet clear. However, this will be an important point to note for
all of our community members, especially those wrestling with opioid addiction
(and their families).
Medical Malpractice Attorneys Serving Long Island for 50+ Years
In our many years of helping clients with medical malpractice claims, our team at
Gruenberg Kelly Della has learned that things are not always what they seem. Drug-related choices
and consequences are often viewed as the responsibility of the addicted
person. However, our Long Island medical malpractice attorneys are aware
that many doctors deliberately over-prescribe dangerous, habit-forming
opioid pain medications in order to receive kick-backs from pharmaceutical
This is unacceptable at best and sinister at worst. If this has happened
to you or someone you love, our experienced legal team is here to serve you.
Call (888) 305-6372 today to speak to a member of our team, or
contact us to schedule your free consultation.