PoliticsHealth Care

Actions

Surgeon General Issues Marijuana Warning For Teens And Pregnant Women

Surgeon General Jerome Adams said, "No amount of marijuana use during pregnancy or adolescence is safe."
Posted at 5:20 PM, Aug 29, 2019

U.S. Surgeon General Dr. Jerome Adams issued a stark warning to young people and  pregnant women on marijuana use.

"This ain't your mother's marijuana. ... Now I'm asking you, all of you across America, to help me spread this simple message: No amount of marijuana use during pregnancy or adolescence is safe."

The American Academy of Pediatrics says marijuana could have negative effects on the developing brain of a fetus or baby if a woman uses the drug while pregnant or breastfeeding. The organization says the concentration of THC, the cannabinoid in marijuana that gives users that "high" feeling, is four times what it was in the 1980s.

HHS' advisory comes as dozens of states have legalized medical and recreational marijuana use.

"And over and over again, i hear a great and rising concern bout the rapid normalization of marijuana use and the impact that a false perception of it's safety is having on our young people and pregnant women," said Adams.

Adams said, "Marijuana is now the third most commonly used illicit substance in adolescents, behind alcohol and e-cigarettes." And he warns nearly one in five of them will become addicted. Adams says use can impair young people's "attention, memory and decision making."

"While we support fully the research into constituent products of marijuana, there is no medical use for marijuana that has been approved by the FDA or has proved safe by the FDA. I would doubt very strongly that pediatricians are advising adolescents to use marijuana for any use," said HHS Assistant Secretary for Health Brett Giroir.

"We need to be clear. Some states' laws on marijuana may have changed, but the science has not and federal law has not," said Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar.