A study in the
September issue of Pediatrics examined whether students who used
cannabis concentrate, a highly potent form of cannabis, were at risk of other
substance use. Researchers for “Cannabis Concentrate Use in Adolescents,”
published online Aug. 26, asked approximately 50,000, 8th, 10th,
and 12th grade students from 245 schools across Arizona in 2018
about their lifetime and past-month marijuana and cannabis concentrate use.
They found that 15% of 8th graders and up to 33% of 12th
graders had used cannabis during those time frames. Of the teens who used
cannabis, 72% had used concentrates as well. Concentrate users were different
from cannabis users who did not use concentrates and non-cannabis users in that
they had higher rates of other substance use and scored higher on risk facts
for substance use problems. Those who reported e-cigarette use also were more
likely to use cannabis concentrate. Further research is needed on the
intertwined effects of cannabis and cannabis concentrate use on risk for
substance use problems. This research may be a step in encouraging policy
makers to consider establishing THC limits on cannabis in states where
recreational or medical marijuana is legal.
A solicited commentary, “Use of Cannabis Concentrates by Adolescents,” will be
published in Pediatrics.