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Open AccessArticle

Cannabis Use in Patients Presenting to a Gastroenterology Clinic: Associations with Symptoms, Endoscopy Findings, and Esophageal Manometry

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Department of Internal Medicine, Drexel University College of Medicine, Philadelphia, PA 19107, USA
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Department of Gastroenterology & Hepatology, Drexel University College of Medicine, Philadelphia, PA 19107, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Gastrointest. Disord. 2019, 1(3), 301-307; https://doi.org/10.3390/gidisord1030025
Received: 14 April 2019 / Revised: 23 June 2019 / Accepted: 27 June 2019 / Published: 1 July 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Current Developments in Esophageal Pathology)
Recreational cannabis use is increasing with its legalization in many states. Animal studies suggest cannabis can reduce transient lower esophageal sphincter relaxations (TLESRS), reflux and vomiting, while human studies report conflicting findings. There are currently no large studies investigating gastrointestinal symptoms in patients with chronic cannabis use. This was a retrospective case-control study including patients who presented to an outpatient Gastroenterology office, with documented cannabis use. Their main presenting complaint, demographics, frequency and duration of cannabis use, endoscopic and high-resolution esophageal manometry (HREM) with impedance findings were recorded. Cannabis users were more likely to complain of abdominal pain (25% vs. 8%, p < 0.0001), heartburn (15% vs. 9%, p < 0.0001), and nausea & vomiting (7% vs. 1%, p < 0.0001). They were also more likely to have findings of esophagitis (8% vs. 3%, p = 0.0002), non-erosive gastritis (30% vs. 15%, p = 0.0001) and erosive gastritis (14% vs. 3%, p < 0.0001) on upper endoscopy. Cannabis users were more likely to have impaired esophageal bolus clearance (43% vs. 17%, p = 0.04) and a hypertensive lower esophageal sphincter (LES) (29% vs. 7%, p = 0.04). This study is the largest to date evaluating GI complaints of patients with chronic recreational cannabis use. Our results suggest that cannabis use may potentiate or fail to alleviate a variety of GI symptoms which goes against current knowledge. View Full-Text
Keywords: cannabis; functional gastrointestinal disorders; stomach; esophagus cannabis; functional gastrointestinal disorders; stomach; esophagus
MDPI and ACS Style

Parikh, M.; Sookal, S.; Ahmad, A. Cannabis Use in Patients Presenting to a Gastroenterology Clinic: Associations with Symptoms, Endoscopy Findings, and Esophageal Manometry. Gastrointest. Disord. 2019, 1, 301-307.

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