Quantcast
Connect with us

Daily use of marijuana increases risk of psychosis, study finds

Published

on

A British study released Monday suggested that the risk of psychosis was five times higher for regular users of cannabis, adding to a growing body of evidence linking drug use and mental health disorders.

The six-year study published in the medical journal The Lancet reported on 780 people living in south London, 410 of whom were being treated for conditions including schizophrenia and bipolar disorder.

ADVERTISEMENT

The report’s lead author was Marta Di Forti from the Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology and Neuroscience at King’s College London, who warned about the growing use of “skunk” — a powerful type of cannabis.

“Compared with those who had never tried cannabis, users of high potency skunk-like cannabis had a threefold increase in risk of psychosis,” she said.

“The risk to those who use every day was even higher — a fivefold increase compared to people who never use,” she added in a statement.

Psychosis is a mental health problem and the symptoms include hallucinations and delusions.

ADVERTISEMENT

In England, about one new case of psychosis is diagnosed for every 2,000 people every year.

“This paper suggests that we could prevent almost one quarter of cases of psychosis if no-one smoked high potency cannabis,” said Robin Murray, professor of psychiatric research at King’s College London and a senior researcher for the study.

“This could save young patients a lot of suffering and the NHS (National Health Service) a lot of money,” he said.

ADVERTISEMENT

The study was based on 410 patients who reported psychosis between 2005 and 2011. A further 370 healthy participants from the same area of south London were included for comparison.

Researchers said Monday that it was important for doctors to ask not just about drug use but about frequency of drug use to assess the risk.

“This gives more information about whether the user is at risk of mental health problems. Awareness needs to increase for this to happen,” Di Forti said.

ADVERTISEMENT

A Home Office spokesman said the findings confirmed the government’s hardline approach, adding: “Drugs such as cannabis are illegal because scientific and medical evidence demonstrates they are harmful.”

Several major reports over recent years have pointed to a link between cannabis use and psychosis.

In 2010, a survey of 3,800 young adults in Australia found an increased risk of psychosis for those who started smoking cannabis at an early age and used it for several years.

ADVERTISEMENT

Nearly four percent of adults around the world use cannabis, according to a paper in The Lancet from 2009, which cited figures from the UN Office on Drugs and Crime.


Report typos and corrections to: [email protected].
READ COMMENTS - JOIN THE DISCUSSION
Continue Reading

Facebook

‘Thrones’ seeks final Emmys glory — but ‘Fleabag’ springs surprise

Published

on

"Fleabag" star Phoebe Waller-Bridge sprang a major surprise at the Emmys Sunday, besting eight-time acting winner Julia Louis-Dreyfus in a major upset, on a night when "Game of Thrones" takes its final tilt at television glory.

The dark British comedy -- which has grown into a phenomenon on both sides of the Atlantic after being acquired by Amazon -- also scooped the awards for best comedy writing and directing at television's answer to the Oscars.

"It's just really wonderful to know and reassuring that a dirty, pervy, angry, messed-up woman can make it to the Emmys," said Waller-Bridge, referring to her character.

Continue Reading

Facebook

‘There is no defense for the president to sacrifice national security’: Ex-White House counsel on Ukraine-gate

Published

on

President Barack Obama's White House counsel, Bob Bauer, explained during a Sunday MSNBC appearance that one of the worst things President Donald Trump has done in Ukraine-gate is to put American national security in jeopardy.

"Some would like to argue the law didn’t discuss bribery. Let me go beyond that," Bauer began. "There’s not a commentator on the facts that, for example, Carol laid out, and there are more facts to be found out. I think that's the responsibility of the Congress. There's not a scholar or commentator in the know that would believe for a minute it’s not an impeach offense for the president of the United States to sacrifice national security interest of the American people to his political personal gain. I mean, there's not a question about that."

Continue Reading
 

Facebook

FIFA chief urges action after racist abuse halts Serie A game

Published

on

FIFA president Gianni Infantino said Sunday the problem of racism in Italian football has "not improved" after a Serie A match between Atalanta and Fiorentina was halted for several minutes because of racist abuse of Brazilian Dalbert.

Fiorentina defender Dalbert, 26, asked the referee to halt play after half an hour at the Stadio Ennio Tardini until a warning statement was read out by the stadium speaker to jeers and whistles from the Atalanta fans.

Play resumed after three minutes with visitors Fiorentina leading 1-0 after a goal from Federico Chiesa.

"In Italy the situation has not improved and this is serious," Infantino, in Italy ahead of the FIFA Best Awards on Monday, told the Italian Rai2 channel.

Continue Reading
 
 
Help Raw Story Investigate and Uncover Injustice. Join Raw Story Investigates for $1 and go ad-free.
close-image