Commentary| Volume 40, ISSUE 9, P1204-1207, September 2018

Cannabis: Implications for Pregnancy, Fetal Development, and Longer-Term Health Outcomes

      The overwhelming advice of researchers in this field is that the safest course of action is to avoid cannabis exposure in utero, and to the developing infant, yet women and cannabis dispensers are likely to believe it is safe. There is a very real risk that legalization may be equated with safe in the minds of the public. In legalizing cannabis, which comes from a plant containing hundreds of active chemicals, the government needs to
      • 1
        Take immediate steps to ensure that the message regarding safety in pregnancy is clear and unambiguous.
      • 2
        Recognize that we are in the unique position to address the enormous gap in research in the neurodevelopmental safety of these substances and should commit to supporting this research.
      • 3
        Provide mechanisms to support clinical and population heath research, including long-term follow-up.
      • 4
        Provide guidance on regulation to ensure that false health claims are not made regarding cannabis in pregnancy.
      • 5
        Support the development of clinical practice guidelines and evidence-based educational initiatives for cannabis dispensaries, health providers, and pharmacists, as well as knowledge dissemination.
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