BREAKING NEWS — FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Sept 28, 2010
The Glaucoma Foundation warns patients of dangers of using marijuana.
In their newsletter released late on Sept 27, 2010, the Glaucoma Foundation
warned patients with glaucoma not to use marijuana. They specifically
criticized efforts by pro-marijuana forces to use incomplete evidence in
their quest to make marijuana acceptable. Although marijuana does decrease
intraocular pressure, it is very short-acting and would have to be smoked
every few hours day and night to be effective. Otherwise, people will suffer
rebound spikes in intraocular pressure which could trigger glaucoma attacks.
Marijuana can also decrease blood supply to the optic nerve, also worsening
The American Glaucoma Society has already warned against using marijuana to
treat glaucoma, but highlighted their concern in a February editorial in the
Journal of Glaucoma warning patients not to use marijuana. This came after
their position statement of August 2009, also saying that marijuana was not
recommended for glaucoma. However, the warnings are getting stronger as more
evidence comes in.
The National Multiple Sclerosis Society has also warned that marijuana could
be harmful for people with multiple sclerosis. And the American Cancer
Society has said there is not enough evidence to recommend marijuana for
anything. The Institute of Medicine, an independent agency, did the most
complete review of the research on marijuana and came to the conclusion that
marijuana is not medicine.
Ed Gogek, M.D. is an addiction psychiatrist and steering committee member of
Keep AZ Drug Free, the committee opposing Propositon 203, the so-called
medical marijuana law on November¹s ballot in Arizona.
Dr. Gogek says, “The demand for medical marijuana is not coming from doctors
or patient care organizations. It’s coming entirely from pot-smokers.
They’re running a million dollar ad campaign in our state trying to convince
people that marijuana is medicine, and that is simply not true. Based on
almost no evidence, they’ve been pushing the idea that marijuana is good for
glaucoma, but now the evidence is coming in that it’s actually dangerous.
That’s one more reason these medical marijuana laws are so harmful. You
don’t prescribe a medicine on one person’s story or wishful thinking; you
have to look at all the research. That’s what the FDA does and that’s why we
should trust the FDA instead of a bunch of pot-smokers.”
From their website: The mission of The Glaucoma Foundation (TGF) is to fund
groundbreaking research and to educate the public about the disease and the
importance of early detection to prevent blindness. Founded in1984 by Dr.
Robert Ritch, TGF is one of the premier not-for-profit organizations
dedicated to eradicating blindness from glaucoma through vital research and
Newsletter release 9-27-10 http://www.glaucomafoundation.org/newsletter.htm
Warning not to use marijuana:
February 2010 Journal of Glaucoma
American Glaucoma Society Position on Marijuana
Website for Glaucoma Foundation
Here’s the Marijuana Policy Project, still claiming marijuana is good for
glaucoma despite statements from the American Glaucoma Society from over a
year ago. (Also note, they say IOM supports them but they just took one
sentence from the complete report. The IOM’s conclusion is that marijuana is
Contacts at Keep AZ Drug Free, a ballot opposition committee registered with the Secretary of State to oppose Prop 203
Ed Gogek, M.D.