September 4, 2019

A few days ago, the U.S. Surgeon General, Vice Admiral Jerome Adams, held a press conference with the U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services, Dr. Alex Azar, to present the Surgeon General’s Advisory in regards to Marijuana Use and the Developing Brain.

The Surgeon General and Secretary both emphasized that science and federal laws have not changed. No amount of marijuana during pregnancy or adolescence is safe.

The concerns they express are regarding the increased risk that the higher potency of THC in marijuana and the changing methods of use pose on pregnant women and the effect on the infant brain and on the adolescent brain. They also recognize that women and adolescents are less likely to recognize the risk due to the rapid “normalization” of marijuana use due to changing state laws across the United States.

I am happy our state legislature made the decision in accordance with our Medical Society’s policy to not allow legalization of recreational marijuana at this time. The NHMS policy recommends additional research on the impact of cannabis products on public health to ensure that the benefit outweighs the risk and that regulatory systems are in place to protect the residents of New Hampshire.

President Trump has donated a portion of his salary ($100,000) to support the digital campaign to make the public aware of the hazards of vaping, smoking or otherwise using marijuana. This digital campaign will target pregnant women, parents of adolescents and adolescents. The hope is that getting the message to this targeted audience that marijuana use is not safe and poses significant risk will change the tide on increased use and “normalization” of marijuana use.

U.S. Surgeon General’s Advisory: Marijuana Use and the Developing Brain


Tessa Lafortune-Greenberg, MD
NHMS President

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