Pregnant Teens More Likely to Use Marijuana Than Their Nonpregnant Peers — Physician’s First Watch

Medical News |
April 18, 2017

Pregnant Teens More Likely to Use Marijuana Than Their Nonpregnant Peers

By Amy Orciari Herman

Edited by David G. Fairchild, MD, MPH

Pregnant teenagers are more than twice as likely as their nonpregnant peers to report using marijuana, according to a research letter in the Annals of Internal Medicine.

Researchers examined data on 14,400 pregnant and 395,600 nonpregnant females aged 12 to 44 years who completed the National Survey on Drug Use and Health between 2002 and 2015. Overall, pregnant females were less likely than nonpregnant respondents to report marijuana use in the past month (roughly 4% vs. 8%). However, among respondents aged 12 to 17, the rate of use was 14% among pregnant girls versus 6% among nonpregnant girls.

In addition, among all pregnant respondents, black females were the most likely to report marijuana use (6%). When the data were analyzed according to trimester, use was most common in the first trimester (6%) — "when fetuses may be most susceptible to damage from drugs," the authors note.

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