Impact of Medical Marijuana Legalization on Opioid Use, Chronic Opioid Use, and High-risk Opioid Use

To determine the association of medical marijuana legalization with prescription opioid utilization. In states where marijuana is available through medical channels, a modestly lower rate of opioid and high-risk opioid prescribing was observed. Policy makers could consider medical marijuana legalization as a tool that may modestly reduce chronic and high-risk opioid use. However, further research assessing risk versus benefits of medical marijuana legalization and head to head comparisons of marijuana versus opioids for pain management is required.

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