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Perceptions of Marijuana Use for Glaucoma from Patients, Cannabis Retailers, and Glaucoma Specialists.

Ophthalmol Glaucoma. 2020 Jul 03;:

Authors: Weldy EW, Stanley J, Koduri VA, McCourt EA, Patnaik JL, Kahook MY, Seibold LK

PURPOSE: As marijuana’s popularity continues to grow, patients with glaucoma will encounter conflicting opinions on marijuana’s role in glaucoma therapy. This study seeks to define the differing perceptions among glaucoma specialists, medical marijuana dispensaries, and glaucoma patients in a state with legalized marijuana.
DESIGN: Cross-sectional study.
PARTICIPANTS: Medical marijuana dispensaries in Colorado, members of the American Glaucoma Society (AGS), and patients with glaucoma at the University of Colorado glaucoma clinic.
METHODS: First, medical marijuana dispensary employees were surveyed using a mystery call approach and a brief phone script. Dispensary employees were questioned as to whether marijuana was recommended and whether marijuana was safe and effective. Second, a self-administered survey was distributed to AGS members to determine the history of recommending marijuana and influencing factors for or against this recommendation. Third, the self-administered glaucoma patient survey assessed demographics, history of glaucoma, knowledge and rate of marijuana use, and perceptions of marijuana use. All surveys were conducted from October 2018 to March 2019.
MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: The proportion of medical marijuana dispensaries and glaucoma specialists recommending marijuana for the treatment of glaucoma, and the proportion of patients with glaucoma using marijuana as a treatment for glaucoma.
RESULTS: A total of 203 of the 300 medical marijuana dispensaries called were successfully contacted (68%). Of these, 103 respondents (51%) recommended marijuana products for the treatment of glaucoma. The remaining 100 (49%) deferred making a recommendation or were unsure. Of the 1308 AGS members, 290 (22%) responded to the survey. Twenty-two respondents (7.6%) reported that they had recommended marijuana for the treatment of glaucoma, with the majority of these (86.4%) having done so infrequently. Among the 231 respondents with glaucoma, most (58.9%) had heard about the possible use of marijuana for glaucoma, but only 2.6% had used marijuana as a treatment for glaucoma.
CONCLUSIONS: Few glaucoma specialists have recommended marijuana as a treatment for glaucoma, and an even smaller percentage of patients report its use as a treatment for their glaucoma. In contrast, many marijuana dispensary employees endorse its use. As legal access and public acceptance of marijuana escalate, physicians should be aware of these perceptions when educating patients.

PMID: 32782211 [PubMed – as supplied by publisher]

Source: ncbi 2

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