A study out of California reports to show that up to 92 percent of the state’s medical cannabis users say the plant works to help improve their health while only 8 percent reported that it didn’t -presumably keeping their cards for purely recreational uses.
Some champion the results as showing that the medical cannabis system isn’t a fraud at all, nor is it a guise for twenty-something’s to legally access pot. It is truly helping people.
“Our study’s results lend support to the idea that medical marijuana is used equally by many groups of people and is not exclusively used by any one specific group,” the authors said in a summary.
The survey, published in the New England Journal of Medicine, found that about 1.4 million Californians have used cannabis medically. Of that number, 92 percent say it worked to help with their specific condition. The study also showed medical use spread across a wide range of demographics – not just 20-something stoners looking to score easy bags of pot from the local dispensary.
“Our study contradicts commonly held beliefs that medical marijuana is being overused by healthy individuals,” the report reads. “The most common reasons for use include medical conditions for which mainstream treatments may not exist, such as for migraines, or may not be effective, including for chronic pain and cancer.”
The study of 7,525 respondents showed that about one in 20 had used medical cannabis at least once in their lives. Researchers said they were somewhat astounded by the results and didn’t expect the numbers to be that high.
“This is people who at least at one point in their lifetime did use it and reported benefits. It’s certainly worthy of more study. If it were a placebo effect, we would only see about 30 percent reporting benefits. It’s a pretty large number,” said Marta Induni, a researcher with the study. “It’s a very high number for any field particularly public health, where people are still fighting about immunizations. They can’t agree on that, but they can agree [cannabis]has helped them with their medical conditions.”