A new study by researchers from The University of Adelaide found that cannabis use during pregnancy could lead to premature births. The study looked at data from 5,500 pregnant women. The information was initially gathered as part of the Screening for Pregnancy Endpoints project.
After reviewing all the data, researchers tried to figure out which risk factors contributed to multiple pregnancy and birth complications.
And they say they found some links between cannabis use and premature births.
Out of the 5,500 women in the study, 5.6% stated that they used marijuana while pregnant. There were also 236 premature births in the group of 5,500 women.
The researchers discovered that most of the premature births occurred in the women who used cannabis. Here are some highlights from their findings:
- 36% of marijuana users delivered babies at less than 28 weeks gestation
- 64% of marijuana users had their babies before the 32-week mark
- 5% of women who didn’t use cannabis delivered babies before 28 weeks
- 16% of women who didn’t use marijuana had their babies before 32 weeks
- Among women who had premature babies, those who used marijuana had an average gestation of fewer than 30 weeks. Those who didn’t use marijuana had an average gestation of 34 weeks.
The study’s results were announced today ahead of its official publication. The article will be published in the July edition of the scientific journal “Reproductive Toxicology.”
It is the latest study to look at the effects of cannabis on pregnant women.
So far there’s a lot of confusion on this topic.
But there’s also a growing body of research suggesting that cannabis could be harmful to pregnant women and their babies.
Along with the study announced today, a project completed last month by scientists in Arizona found that marijuana use could contribute to low birth weights. It also suggested that women who use cannabis while pregnant are more likely to become anemic.
The real problem is that there just isn’t enough data yet to reach any reliable conclusions.
A statement from The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists said:
“It’s hard to be certain about the specific effects of marijuana on pregnancy and the developing fetus.”
“High-quality studies regarding the consequences of marijuana and other cannabis products on pregnancy and lactation are needed.”