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Daily cannabis use linked to 42% higher risk of stroke

  • 2 Min To Read
  • 3 months ago

A recent study of over 430,000 U.S. adults has found a significant association between cannabis use and increased cardiovascular risks, such as heart attack, stroke, and coronary heart disease. The study, published in the Journal of the American Heart Association, revealed that even occasional cannabis use was linked to a higher risk of adverse cardiovascular outcomes, with daily users having a 25% greater risk of heart attack and a 42% higher risk of stroke compared to non-users.

Researchers emphasized that this increased risk was present even in individuals who had never used tobacco cigarettes or nicotine e-cigarettes, highlighting the independent association between cannabis use and cardiovascular issues. Younger adults, particularly men under 55 and women under 65, were found to have a 36% higher risk of coronary heart disease, heart attack, or stroke if they used cannabis.

The study also highlighted the potential negative effects of cannabis smoke on the heart and blood vessels. Fine particulate matter inhaled through smoking can damage blood vessels and the heart, increasing the risk of cardiovascular events. Additionally, the activation of cannabinoid receptors by cannabis and the impact of THC on blood flow were noted as potential mechanisms for the increased risk of heart attack and stroke.

Despite the observational nature of the study and its limitations in assessing causation, researchers stressed the importance of considering cannabis use as a potential cardiovascular risk factor. Physicians were encouraged to inquire about cannabis use during patient assessments, especially for those with existing cardiovascular risk factors.

While cannabis products may have therapeutic benefits for conditions like sleeplessness or chronic pain, individuals are urged to weigh the risks of compromised cardiac function associated with cannabis use. More research is needed to fully understand the cardiovascular effects of different types of cannabis products, such as edibles, and to address the gaps in knowledge regarding the risks and benefits of cannabis use in relation to heart health.

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