Researchers Study Neuroprotective Properties In Cannabis

You’re going to want to read this if:

A. You smoke cannabis

B. You are a female who is pregnant who uses cannabis

C. You support legalization of MMJ

D. All of the above

DM: Tell me about this study in the American Journal of Pediatrics talking about pregnant Jamaican women and the use of pot.

MH: Melanie Dreher, who is the dean of nursing at Rush Medical Center in Chicago, did a study in Jamaica. It was actually published in the American Journal of Pediatrics in 1994, but now it’s re-circulating because of all the interest in the neuroprotective properties.

Basically, she studied women during their entire pregnancy, and then studied the babies about a year after birth. And what she studied was a group of women who did smoke cannabis during pregnancy and those who didn’t. She expected to see a difference in the babies as far as birth weight and neuro tests, but there was no difference whatsoever. The differences that the researchers did notice, that are unexplained and kind of curious are that the babies of the women who had smoked cannabis — and we’re talking about daily use during their pregnancy — socialized more quickly, made eye contact more quickly and were easier to engage.

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