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WIRE: Review indicates marijuana use not likely to cause psychosis

Laramie, WY: The use of marijuana alone is most likely not a contributor to psychosis disorder, according to a literature review published in the journal Current Psychiatry Reports.

A pair of researchers from the University of Wyoming and from Columbia University in New York City evaluated recent studies associating the use of cannabis with psychotic behaviors. They reported that cannabis use does not cause the psychosis, but rather, that subjects susceptible to the disorder are more likely to engage in early-onset use of the substance.

“Evidence reviewed here suggests that cannabis does not in itself cause a psychosis disorder,” they concluded. “Rather, the evidence leads us to conclude that both early use and heavy use of cannabis are more likely in individuals with a vulnerability to psychosis.”

Separate studies have similarly questioned whether cannabis use causes other psychiatric disorders, such as schizophrenia, while others have suggested that certain compounds in cannabis, such as cannabidiol (aka CBD), may be potentially efficacious as anti-psychotic agents.

For more information, please contact Paul Armentano, NORML Deputy Director, at: paul@norml.org. Full text of the study, “Cannabis and psychosis: A critical overview of the relationship,” appears in Current Psychiatry Reports.

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