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April 10, 2018

Driving Under the Influence of CannabisAn Increasing Public Health Concern

Author Affiliations
  • 1Faculty of Psychology and Neuroscience, Maastricht University, Maastricht, the Netherlands
JAMA. 2018;319(14):1433-1434. doi:10.1001/jama.2018.1334

Driving is a complex task that requires integrity of sensory, motor, and cognitive function. The driving task may be compromised by factors related to the vehicle, the driving environment, and the driver. Driver impairment is a major cause of motor vehicle crashes and commonly results from alcohol intoxication.1 Cannabis is the most frequently detected illicit drug among drivers involved in motor vehicle crashes, often in combination with alcohol.2 Evidence from experimental and epidemiological studies indicates that cannabis also impairs driving performance and increases crash risk.1,2 The prevalence of cannabis use is expected to increase following recent legalization of medical and recreational use in several countries worldwide and the introduction of a legal cannabis industry.3 As a result, driving under the influence of cannabis has become an increasing public health concern.

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