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Cannabis Attitudes and Patterns of Use Among Members of The Allergy & Asthma Network (AAN)

      Rationale

      To determine cannabis patterns of use and attitudes toward cannabis in allergy/asthma patients, a potentially high-risk group for adverse effects to cannabis.

      Methods

      Adult Allergy & Asthma Network (AAN) members completed an anonymous online survey on cannabis attitudes and use (N=489). The Asthma Control Test assessed asthma burden. Cluster and factor analyses determined group phenotypes and condensed cannabis subjective effects items into similar response patterns, respectively.

      Results

      Eighty-eight (18.0%) respondents are current cannabis users with the majority <50 years-old, female, and White. Of non-cannabis users (N=401), 2.5% reported cannabis allergy. Cluster analysis revealed a liberal attitude towards cannabis was associated with current cannabis users compared to cannabis non-users (P<0.001). Among current cannabis users, 40.9% of their physicians inquired about cannabis use and only 37.5% wanted to discuss cannabis with their physician. 65.9% use cannabis for medical or both medical/recreational purposes. Cannabinoids used were tetrahydrocannabinol (33.0%), cannabidiol (19.3%), or both (47.7%). Smoked and vaped cannabis were reported by 53.4% and 35.2%, respectively. Fifty-one cannabis users (58.0%) had current asthma; 39.2% were uncontrolled of which 50% smoked cannabis. Overall, positive effects were endorsed more than adverse effects to cannabis. Coughing (19.3%) (but not vaping) was associated with smoking cannabis, as 31.9% of smokers and 4.9% non-smokers reported cough (P<0.001).

      Conclusions

      Less than 20% of allergy/asthma patients use cannabis. Positive effects to cannabis were more prevalent than adverse effects. Of concern is half of current cannabis users with uncontrolled asthma smoke cannabis and a minority of physicians inquire about its use.