The use of cannabis during pregnancy is a highly disputed topic among marijuana scientists and gynecologists. The latter often associate in utero exposure to marijuana with a negative impact on offspring. In order to achieve a new level of understanding, researchers conducted a literature review of the existing studies on the long-term effects of cannabis exposure during the prenatal period.
The findings of the study carried out by the scientists from the University of Maryland and the Virginia Commonwealth University was published in the journal Preventive Medicine.
According to this scientific review, there is not enough evidence to conclude that the use of cannabis by pregnant women has long-lasting adverse effects on the brain of infants. The scientists discovered that there was no significant difference between children who were exposed to cannabis during the prenatal period and those who did not.
A previous literature review published in the journal Obstetrics & Gynecology last year, also found that cannabis use during pregnancy could not be the only reason for low birth weight in infants.
Moreover, a 2016 UK cohort study
investigated the impact of in utero exposure to alcohol, tobacco, and marijuana on educational
performance in teenagers. The findings revealed that marijuana
exposure did not lead to long-lasting effects on the brain of the
fetus, while the exposure to tobacco or alcohol were associated with
the risks of detrimental influence on educational abilities in
The recent study published in Preventive Medicine does not confirm the theoretical statement that the use of cannabis negatively impacts neurological development in offspring.
According to the study, the legalization of marijuana in the majority of American states provides pregnant women with a legal opportunity to consume the substance. However, there still is too little relevant information on the long-term influence of cannabis on offspring.
An increasing number of mothers-to-be are choosing cannabis for reducing the negative symptoms of pregnancy, such as nausea, vomiting, and weight loss.
Analyzing the human data of four prospective cohorts, the researchers found that there is no long-term difference in the brain functioning of the children who were exposed to cannabis during the prenatal period.
Nevertheless, the scientists outlined the importance of further investigations on this matter, as pregnant women should minimize the risks they expose their children to during prenatal period. The researchers advised encouraging mothers-to-be to decrease or stop the use of marijuana during pregnancy.