Cannabis-friendly trauma patients are less likely to die in-hospital than age-matched controls, a new study published in the Journal of Trauma and Acute Care Surgery found.

University of Arizona researchers examined in-hospital mortality rates of adults in the intensive care unit – of which 2,678 were matched (1,339 cannabis positive, 1,339 cannabis negative) – over the course of five years. They discovered that those who tested positive for cannabis upon admission were less likely to die while hospitalized.

“Patients with a positive marijuana screen had a lower mortality rate (5.3 percent versus 8.9 percent) compared to patients with a negative marijuana screen,” the researchers wrote.

“Prospective studies with long-term follow up will be useful in answering many of the remaining questions surrounding the specific impact of marijuana on outcomes after trauma.”

This isn’t the first study to link cannabis use with a higher likelihood of survival. Past research has found that cannabis-positive patients admitted to the ICU for traumatic brain injuries and heart attacks have greater survival rates than matched controls.  

h/t NORML blog