Teens who use marijuana are more likely to suffer psychotic disorders, study finds

Teenagers who used cannabis within the last year had a dramatically higher rate of developing a psychotic disorder, according to a study published Wednesday.

The study, led by researchers from the University of Toronto, found an 11 times higher risk of developing a psychotic disorder among teenagers who used cannabis compared with those who did not. When the analysis was limited to just emergency room visits and hospitalizations, there was a 27-fold increase in psychotic disorders in teenagers who had used the drug.

“When I see youths with psychotic symptoms, they’re almost always using lots of cannabis,” said Dr. Leslie Hulvershorn, a child psychiatrist and chair of the psychiatry department at Indiana University who was not involved with the study. “It would be unusual to see someone present with psychotic symptoms to a hospital and not have smoked cannabis.”

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