APR 19, 2024 5:00 AM PDT

The Link Between Cannabis Use and Lower Covid Mortality

WRITTEN BY: Kerry Charron

A study published in the Journal of Cannabis Research examined the associations between cannabis use and Covid-19-related outcomes among hospitalized patients. The researchers used a national inpatient sample database to examine COVID and lower mortality rates among patients with and without a history of cannabis use. 

The researchers conducted a multi-center retrospective observational cohort analysis of adults in the 2020 National Inpatient Sample database. They used multivariable regression and propensity score matching analysis (PSM) to determine trends and outcomes among Covid-19-related hospitalizations. 

The study revealed 1,698,560 COVID-19-related hospitalizations, which were associated with higher mortality (13.44% vs 2.53%) and worse secondary outcomes. The analysis highlighted a history of cannabis use was associated with lower odds of COVID-19-related hospitalization, mechanical ventilation, and death when compared to patients without a history of cannabis use. Cannabis users had an 83.97% lower risk of death than non-users. Among all-cause hospitalizations, those admitted with COVID-19 consisted of 1.56% of cannabis users and 6.29% of non-cannabis users. 

The study’s findings suggest that the endocannabinoid system (ECS) may be a viable target for modulating COVID-19. The findings also indicate that the long-term storage and release of THC may mitigate severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) viral infection and associated outcomes among hospitalized COVID-19 patients. 

The findings align with prior investigations suggesting the role of the ECS in modulating the innate antiviral response. The study points to new evidence that the ECS may minimize the effects and mortality of Covid-19 disease.

Previous studies have also indicated a connection between cannabis and COVID-19 and showed that cannabinoid compounds such as CBDA (cannabidiolic acid) and CBGA (cannabigerol acid) possess antiviral properties. This study contributes to the growing body of research that suggests cannabis can potentially play a role in the prevention and treatment of COVID-19.

Source: Forbes, Journal of Cannabis Research


About the Author
Bachelor's (BA/BS/Other)
Kerry Charron writes about medical cannabis research. She has experience working in a Florida cultivation center and has participated in advocacy efforts for medical cannabis.
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