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Cannabis Use and Postoperative Complications

Increasing rates of cannabis use, driven by changes in public opinion and legislation, can impact perioperative outcomes.

Previous Study

A previous study by Goel et al. (2020), published in Anesthesiology, did not identify an association between cannabis use and postoperative complications. This study used older versions (prior to 2015) of the National Inpatient Sample (NIS). They examined major elective surgeries, including cesarean delivery (40% of the sample) and CABG. The older NIS is also limited by the use of the ICD-9 system of diagnosis and procedure codes, which are not as comprehensive as the newer ICD-10 system.

  • In the United States, administrative data demonstrate that cannabis use disorder has increased in prevalence from 2010 to 2015
  • Active cannabis use disorder is not associated with a change in overall perioperative morbidity, mortality, length of stay, or costs
  • However, active cannabis use disorder is associated with a meaningful increase in the risk of postoperative myocardial infarction
Goel et. al (2020) in Anesthesiology

Our New Study

However, more recent National Inpatient Sample data from 2016 onwards are now available. We performed a study examining the association between cannabis use disorder and adverse perioperative outcomes.

The study has been accepted for publication in JAMA Surgery.

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