Review of Studies Finds Cannabis May Not Be Linked To Cognitive Dysfunction In Seniors

Marijuana use among older adults may not have a major effect on cognitive function.

That is the takeaway of a new review published late last year in Archives of Clinical Neuropsychology. Reviewing a combination of both human and animal trials, the researchers examined the studies “to critically examine the extent of literature on this topic and highlight areas for future research” on the effect of cannabis exposure on older subjects.

“Six articles reported findings for older populations (three human and three rodent studies), highlighting the paucity of research in this area. Human studies revealed largely null results, likely due to several methodological limitations,” the researchers wrote. “Better-controlled rodent studies indicate that the relationship between [THC] and cognitive function in healthy aging depends on age and level of THC exposure. Extremely low doses of THC improved cognition in very old rodents. Somewhat higher chronic doses improved cognition in moderately aged rodents. No studies examined the effects of cannabidiol (CBD) or high-CBD cannabis on cognition.”

In conclusion, the authors wrote that their “systematic scoping review examined current research on the relationship between cannabis use and cognitive function in healthy aging and provides a starting point for future research,” as quoted by NORML.

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