Study Finds Most Physicians Discuss Medical Marijuana With Patients With Cancer

A study published in the Journal of Clinical Oncology found that 79.8% of oncologists who responded to a survey report discussing medical marijuana with their patients who have cancer.

In November 2016, researchers mailed a survey on medical marijuana to a nationally-representative, random sample of 400 medical oncologists. The survey asked about discussions surrounding medical marijuana, recommendations for medical marijuana, an understanding of the use of medical marijuana in this patient population, and personal views on the comparative effectiveness of medical marijuana, as well as perceived risks compared with prescription opioids. The researchers observed a 63% overall response rate (n=376).

Just 30% of oncologists felt sufficiently informed to make recommendations about medical marijuana; however, most respondents reported discussing this with patients. In addition, 45.9% reported recommending marijuana for cancer-related issues to at least one patient in the past year, and 67% viewed it as a helpful adjunct to standard pain management strategies.

Source: Journal of Clinical Oncology