The first study, published in the journal PLOS One, was conducted by researchers at the University of New Mexico, who looked at 37 patients with chronic pain enrolled in New Mexico’s medical cannabis program and tracked them over a 21 month period. A final survey of the patient pool found that over 80 percent of respondents significantly reduced their opioid use with the aid of cannabis; roughly 40 percent of the patients studied ceased all opioid use in favor of weed.
The second study comes from a private research firm in Illinois, Aclara. Although the Illinois study won’t be finalized until early next year, their preliminary data agrees with findings from previous opioid and cannabis studies. A press release published Tuesday stated that out of 400 patients in Illinois, 67 percent stopped taking all opioid drugs after enrollment in the state’s medical marijuana program; 37 percent stopped using all conventional prescription medications, and over 60 percent of respondents said they not only reduced their use of prescription drugs but also took fewer trips to the pharmacy once they got on medical marijuana.