Older Cannabis Users May Take Fewer Prescription Opioids, Benzodiazepines
New survey findings indicate that older cannabis users taking prescription medications had higher odds of reduced past-year opioid and benzodiazepine use compared with their non-cannabis-using counterparts.
The 80-question survey was comprised of 256 older adults in in Colorado, where recreational and medical cannabis use is legal. Respondents provided information on individual attitudes, experiences, reasons for use, frequency and methods of use, and positive and negative outcomes with cannabis use.
Eighty-three survey respondents reported cannabis use within the past year. Of these, 30% used cannabis for medical purposes only, 52% for both medical and recreational purposes, and 18% for recreational purposes only.
Other notable survey findings included:
- Respondents who used cannabis for medical purposes only were less likely to report good or excellent health.
- Respondents who used cannabis for medical purposes only often reported comparatively higher pain levels.
- Cannabis users had higher odds of being partnered and in caregiving relationships compared with non-users.
These results were shared at the American Public Health Association 2018 Annual Meeting & Expo in San Diego, California.
Kaskie B, Bobitt J. Use of medical cannabis by older Coloradans. Paper presented at: American Public Health Association 2018 Annual Meeting & Expo; November 10-14, 2018; San Diego, CA.