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Association of Cannabis Use with Opioid Outcomes Among Opioid-Dependent Youth.

Drug and Alcohol Dependence 2013;132(1-2):342-345. [doi: 10.1016/j.drugalcdep.2013.02.030]

Kevin P. Hill, MD, MHS (McLean Hospital, NEC Node), Heather E. Bennett (McLean Hospital, NEC Node), Margaret L. Griffin, PhD (McLean Hospital, NEC Node), Hilary S. Connery, MD, PhD (McLean Hospital, NEC Node), Garrett M. Fitzmaurice, ScD (McLean Hospital, NEC Node), Geetha A. Subramaniam, MD (Center for the Clinical Trials Network, NIDA), George E. Woody, MD (Treatment Research Institute, DV Node), Roger D. Weiss, MD (McLean Hospital, NEC Node).

Cannabis use is common among opioid-dependent patients, but studies of its association with treatment outcome are mixed. In this secondary analysis of data, the association of cannabis use with opioid treatment outcome is assessed. In the main study, National Drug Abuse Treatment Clinical Trials Network protocol CTN-0010, participants (n=152) aged 15-21 years were randomized to receive psychosocial treatments and either a 12-week course of buprenorphine-naloxone with a dose taper to zero in weeks 9-12, or a 2-week detoxification with buprenorphine-naloxone. Drug use was assessed by self-report and urine drug screen at baseline and during study weeks 1-12. The association between cannabis and opioid use at weeks 4, 8, and 12 was examined using logistic regression models. Participants reported a median of 3 days (range=0-30) cannabis use in the past month; half reported occasional use, one-third reported no use, and one-sixth reported daily cannabis use. Median lifetime cannabis use was 4 years (range=0-11) and median age of initiation of use was 15 years (range=9-21). Neither past cannabis use (age of initiation and use in the month prior to baseline) nor concurrent use was associated with level of opioid use.

Conclusions: Overall, cannabis use had no association with opioid use over 12 weeks in this sample of opioid-dependent youth. While cannabis use remains potentially harmful, it was not a predictor of poor opioid treatment outcome. These results add to the growing literature on the effects of cannabis use during treatment for another substance use disorder. (Article (Peer-Reviewed), PDF, English, 2013)

Keywords: Adolescents | Buprenorphine/Naloxone | Community health services | CTN platform/ancillary study | Marijuana | Opioid dependence | Pharmacological therapy | Suboxone | Drug and Alcohol Dependence (journal)

Document No: 976, PMID: 23528523, PMCID: PMC3724203.

Submitted by CTN Dissemination Librarians, 4/9/2013

Bennett, Heather E. search
Connery, Hilary S. search
Fitzmaurice, Garrett M. search
Griffin, Margaret L. search
Hill, Kevin P. search
Subramaniam, Geetha A. search mail
Weiss, Roger D. search mail
Woody, George E. search mail
NIDA-CTN-0010 search www

Supported by a grant from the National Institute on Drug Abuse to the University of Washington Alcohol and Drug Abuse Institute.
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