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Obstet Gynecol. 2018 Jun;131(6):1031-1038. doi: 10.1097/AOG.0000000000002619.

Recommendations From Cannabis Dispensaries About First-Trimester Cannabis Use.

Author information

1
University of Colorado School of Medicine and the Colorado School of Public Health, Aurora, Colorado; the University of Utah Health, Salt Lake City, Utah; and Denver Health and Hospital Authority, Denver, Colorado.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

To characterize recommendations given to pregnant women by Colorado cannabis dispensaries regarding use of cannabis products for nausea during the first trimester of pregnancy.

METHODS:

This was a statewide cross-sectional study in which advice about cannabis product use was requested using a mystery caller approach. The caller stated she was 8 weeks pregnant and experiencing morning sickness. Dispensaries were randomly selected from the Colorado Department of Revenue Enforcement Division website. The primary outcome was the proportion of marijuana dispensaries that recommended a cannabis product for use during pregnancy. We hypothesized that 50% of dispensaries would recommend use. A sample size of 400 was targeted to yield a two-sided 95% CI width of 10%. Secondary outcomes included the proportion endorsing cannabis use as safe during pregnancy, specific product recommendations, and encouraging discussion with a health care provider. Recommendations were compared by licensure type (medical, retail, or both) and location (rural vs urban).

RESULTS:

Of the 400 dispensaries contacted, 37% were licensed for medical sale (n=148), 28% for retail (n=111), and 35% for both (n=141). The majority, 69% (277/400), recommended treatment of morning sickness with cannabis products (95% CI 64-74%). Frequency of recommendations differed by license type (medical 83.1%, retail 60.4%, both 61.7%, P<.001). Recommendations for use were similar for dispensary location (urban 71% vs nonurban 63%, P=.18). The majority (65%) based their recommendation for use in pregnancy on personal opinion and 36% stated cannabis use is safe in pregnancy. Ultimately, 81.5% of dispensaries recommended discussion with a health care provider; however, only 31.8% made this recommendation without prompting.

CONCLUSION:

Nearly 70% of Colorado cannabis dispensaries contacted recommended cannabis products to treat nausea in the first trimester. Few dispensaries encouraged discussion with a health care provider without prompting. As cannabis legalization expands, policy and education efforts should involve dispensaries.

PMID:
29742676
PMCID:
PMC5970054
[Available on 2019-06-01]
DOI:
10.1097/AOG.0000000000002619

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