Dr. Alik Widge in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences spoke to Spotlight PA about the use of medical marijuana for anxiety disorders. “I don’t think there’s a story here about abuse of a government program for people to get high. I think there’s a story here about people with anxiety who are hurting and want help,” Dr. Widge said. He added that there’s still uncertainty over whether cannabis will do more harm than good for anxiety patients. 

Anxiety is often the only reason a patient qualifies for medical marijuana. In 2021, nearly 40% of medical marijuana certifications were granted for treating anxiety disorders. On the contrary, medical evidence that supports the benefit of cannabis or its compounds is limited. Medical marijuana program leaders from at least three states have rejected anxiety disorders as a qualifying condition due to the lack of evidence. 

In conclusion, supporters say that medical marijuana gives anxiety disorder patients more options for treating their condition. Federal restrictions limit cannabis research, making it difficult to prove its benefits.

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