Survey Examines Cannabis Use Among Cancer Survivors

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Results highlighted the complexities of cannabis use and products among cancer survivors.

A recently published survey examined data for cannabis use among cancer survivors, focusing on the timelines of use and type of cannabis product used, in order to increase awareness about the possible benefits and decrease the possible adverse effects of ingesting cannabis (1). The cross-sectional study, “Cannabis Use among Cancer Survivors: Use Pattern, Product Type, and Timing of Use,” was published in December 2023 in the journal Cancers (1).

Noting the lack of studies on this topic, the researchers aimed to publish data that reflected current trends of cannabis use before, during, and after cancer diagnosis and treatment (1). Out of 1886 cancer survivors surveyed, 48% had used cannabis sometime in their lifetime and 36% of survivors who had ever used cannabis were current users (1). Nearly half indicated an increase in cannabis use after their diagnosis, 14% reported a decrease, and 38% stated there was no change (1).


Additionally, according to data in the study’s abstract, out of the 298 survivors who used cannabis after their cancer diagnosis (1):

  • 40% used cannabis during and after cancer treatment
  • 35% used cannabis during treatment
  • 25% used cannabis after completing their treatment

In regard to the type of cannabis product, the abstract also stated that (1):

  • 71% of cancer survivors used dry leaf cannabis
  • 46% used cannabidiol (CBD) oil
  • 40% used cannabis candy
  • 32% used baked goods
  • 21% used creams and gels
  • 18% used tinctures

“Many cancer survivors use cannabis as a palliative while undergoing cancer treatment, and this usage tends to rise following cancer diagnosis,” the authors concluded (1). “The forms and modes of delivery of cannabis used during cancer management varied among survivors, with most survivors preferring to inhale or smoke medicinal cannabis.” The results of this study, the authors also stated, reiterated the importance of education for both healthcare providers and survivors using up-to-date information on cannabis use and products (1). The authors also suggested that regulations should support the safest use of medical cannabis by cancer patients (1).


  1. Osaghae, I.; Chido-Amajuoyi, O. G.; Khalifa, B. A.; Talluri, R.; Shete, S. Cannabis use among cancer survivors: Use pattern, product type, and timing of use. Cancers 2023, 15 (24), 5822 DOI: 10.3390/cancers15245822.