Cannabis and alcohol use, affect and impulsivity in psychiatric out-patients’ daily lives
A recent study revealed the increased impulsivity seen throughout the day in psychiatric out-patients who consumed cannabis. Cannabis was also found to increase momentary hostility in psychiatric patients, namely those suffering from bipolar disorder. The study also compared the difference of activity between alcohol and cannabis, finding that although alcohol also caused an increase in impulsivity it was only momentary rather than prolonged. By observing the effects of alcohol and cannabis in patients researchers were able to determine that the two compounds are part of separate processes and operate on different time-scales.
Very little research has been conducted that addresses drug interactions with cannabis. As the prevalence of cannabis use continues to rise as state governments continue to legalize medical and recreational cannabis it is imperative to understand how cannabis affects everyday medications. For those who need blood thinners, muscle relaxants, etc., drug interactions can be dangerous, even fatal, emphasizing the importance of understanding how cannabis interacts with other medications at the cellular level. Pharmacists and physicians need more knowledge to be able to thoroughly inform patients consuming marijuana of the potential risks. Future research should be conducted, as well as chemical modeling studies, to ensure the safety of cannabis users.
The study is available for review or download here
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