Rutgers School of Social Work and Rutgers School of Public Health assistant professor Dr. Qiana L. Brown’s study “Trends in Marijuana Use Among Pregnant and Nonpregnant Reproductive-Aged Women, 2002-2014” has been in the top 5 percent of all research outputs ever, according to Altmetric. The article, which was published in JAMA in 2017, has been viewed over 31,000 times, has nearly 4,000 downloads, and over 100 citations.
The study found that from 2002 to 2014 in the United States, the prevalence of past-month cannabis use increased 62 percent among pregnant women, 47 percent among nonpregnant reproductive-age women, and was highest among young women ages 18 to 25 years (compared to women ages 26 to 44 years) regardless of pregnancy status.
“Given that cannabis use is contraindicated during preconception, pregnancy, and lactation due to its association with poor maternal and child health outcomes, research should continue to monitor the increasing trends in cannabis use among pregnant and nonpregnant reproductive-age women, as such trends may be a signal of more serious public health problems,” said Dr. Brown. “This is especially important given the rapid legalization of cannabis use for medical and recreational purposes across states in the U.S.”
Dr. Brown published the JAMA study when she was a postdoctoral research fellow in the Department of Epidemiology at Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health, along with co-authors Mr. Aaron Sarvet and Drs. Dvora Shmulewitz, Silvia Martins, Melanie Wall and Deborah Hasin, from Columbia University.
In another article, published in Addiction, Dr. Brown and her colleague discuss potential unintended consequences for pregnant women of cannabis use legalization.