Mental Health | Cannabis not recommended for treatment of ADHD

ADHD studies

Mental HealthMental Health | Cannabis is not a recommended treatment option for patients with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) due to a lack of evidence, according to a scoping review. 

Researchers from the Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul, Porto Alegre, Brazil, and McMaster University, Ontario, Canada, published their findings in the Journal of Psychiatric Research.

Researchers pulled studies published through June 27, 2022, on the effect of cannabis on ADHD symptomatology and neuropsychiatric outcomes. Sourced from MEDLINE, EMBASE, EMCARE, PsycINFO, Web of Science, Cochrane Library, and, the studies included experimental and observational data. Researchers examined the study population, methods, and key findings for each study.

A total of 39 studies were included, of which 1 had a randomized and placebo-controlled design. This study showed that cannabis had no effect on ADHD. Most other literature included cross-sectional studies that examined ADHD severity and its connection to cannabis use.

Although some of the studies found that cannabis improved symptoms—and, anecdotally, ADHD patients report symptom improvement with cannabis use—most included studies showed cannabis worsened or had no effect on symptoms of ADHD

Mental HealthResearchers noted that the amount of THC and CBD in many of the included studies were not well measured. Other limitations included “the absence of objective measurements for cannabis exposure and ADHD symptoms, heterogeneous definitions, oversampling, and small sample sizes,” researchers concluded.

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