In 2016, opioids killed more Americans than breast cancer. The drug overdose epidemic has become one of the most concerning public health issues of recent time, and in an effort to stem the tide, more and more patients and doctors are turning to pot over pills.
Dustin Sulak, a doctor of osteopathic medicine, believes that medical marijuana could be part of the solution for states embroiled by the opioid epedemic. “There’s no pill, there’s no spray, no drop, no puff [that] can completely solve this problem,” Sulak told Gupta. “But cannabis, when it’s used in the right way, can take a big bite out of it.”
Sulak was curious as to why some of his patients didn’t need to increase their opioid doses, so he asked them what was different. “The answer was that they were using opioids in combination with cannabis. And they felt that it made the opioids stronger.”
He points out that when opioids are used in combination with cannabis in animals, marijuana can boost an opioid’s effectiveness without requiring higher dosages.
According to the Drug Enforcement Administration, marijuana is a Schedule I drug, meaning it has no medical use and a high potential for abuse.
Sulak wonders, “When will the medical community catch up with what their patient populations are doing?”
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