American society is highly ambivalent about marijuana use. Some hold that marijuana is a harmless substance that should be legalized, while others believe it may confer therapeutic benefit for patients with certain illnesses. Others have serious concerns about the potential for addiction and worsening of mental health. Despite society’s equivocal stance, many states have passed or are moving forward with legislation on medical marijuana programs and some states are outright legalizing marijuana, even though such state legislation conflicts with federal law. While the debate within society continues, controversy within the medical community persists as well. Accumulating evidence from psychiatry implicates marijuana use, especially in adolescence, as a risk factor for poor educational achievement, cannabis and other substance use disorders, and psychotic disorders. This, in light of increasing marijuana use complicates the discourse on legalization. The relevance of this topic is further confirmed by controversy over the “gateway drug” hypothesis and many recent peer-reviewed articles on the effects of marijuana on mental health. This presentation provides a comprehensive overview of the comorbidities of marijuana use and mental disorders through the review and discussion of current research, statistics, and theories associated with marijuana use and mental illness.
**This content was captured at the 2017 APA Annual Meeting and may reference information from various sources and terminology from previous editions of the DSM.
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This course is no longer free to APA members through the Course of the Month program. Promotional pricing ended November 30, 2018.
- Discuss current research and statistics on the co-morbidity of marijuana use and other illicit substances
- Describe marijuana use and its effects on the course of various mental illnesses
- Review current and historical theories of the influence of marijuana on other illicit substance use
Estimated Time to Complete
Estimated Duration: 30 minutes
Begin Date: November 1, 2018
End Date: December 31, 2020
How to Earn Credit
Participants who wish to earn AMA PRA Category 1 Credit ™ or a certificate of participation may do so by completing all sections of the course including the evaluation. A multiple choice quiz is provided based on the content. A passing score of 100% must be achieved. Retakes are available for the test. After evaluating the program, course participants will be provided with an opportunity to claim hours of participation and print an official CME certificate (physicians) or certificate of participation (non-physicians) showing the completion date and hours earned.
The American Psychiatric Association (APA) is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) to provide continuing medical education for physicians.
The APA designates this enduring CME activity for a maximum of 0.5 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit™. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.
Faculty and Planner Disclosures
- Marc W. Manseau, M.D., M.P.H., New York University School of Medicine. Reports no financial relationships with commercial interests.
- Tristan Gorrindo, M.D., Director of Education, American Psychiatric Association. Reports no financial relationships with commercial interests.
- Codie Vassar, M.D., Medical College of Wisconsin. Reports no financial relationships with commercial interests.
- Ricardo A. Juarez, M.S., Director, District Branch and International Relations, American Psychiatric Association. Reports no financial relationships with commercial interests.
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