Study: Daily cannabis use lowers odds of using illicit opioids for pain management in drug-using populations

The current working hypothesis theorizes that people might be substituting their opioid use for cannabis once it becomes legal. File Alex Nguyen

A recent study from the BC Centre on Substance Use and UBC has found an association between daily cannabis use and lowered odds of illicit opioid use, suggesting people who use drugs (PWUD) are substituting opioids with cannabis for chronic pain management.

Between June 2014 and December 2017, researchers interviewed over 1,100 Vancouver residents at risk for opioid overdose who reported having chronic pain. Statistical modelling and self-reported rates of cannabis usage were used to estimate daily opioid usage. Results from the model showed that people who used cannabis daily had nearly 50 per cent lower odds of using illicit opioids than non-cannabis users, while people who used cannabis occasionally and non-cannabis users had the same likelihood of using opioids.

Written by Myla White Ubyssey

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