What the Yuck: Could weed affect my work?
April 15th, 2012
09:00 AM ET

What the Yuck: Could weed affect my work?

Too embarrassed to ask your doctor about sex, body quirks, or the latest celeb health fad? In a regular feature and a new book, "What the Yuck?!," Health magazine medical editor Dr. Roshini Raj tackles your most personal and provocative questions. Send 'em to Dr. Raj at whattheyuck@health.com.

Q: I sometimes smoke pot on the weekend. Can this affect my work during the upcoming week?

A: It sure can. Although the immediate effects of marijuana typically last only one to three hours, frequent users can have a hard time concentrating and processing information, even days later.

Marijuana has other risks, too: It contains more carcinogens than tobacco and can cause the same respiratory issues - possibly even cancer.

Bottom line: Your weekend habit could have consequences way worse than just making you feel spaced out at work.

Copyright Health Magazine 2011

soundoff (348 Responses)
  1. Sam

    According to an NIH report, other chemical differences between Cannabis and Tobacco have an impact on the likelihood of developing cancer from either. Marijuana contains THC and other "cannabinoids" which have been shown to kill cancer cells to a limited degree. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1277837/

    May 17, 2012 at 14:58 | Report abuse | Reply
  2. mr simpson

    Dear CNN,

    Are you aware that a Canadian man cured cancer using THC?

    May 17, 2012 at 15:23 | Report abuse | Reply
  3. zach

    This is ridiculous. the second point completely discredits this article for me. Yes marijuana does have more carcinogens that cigarettes do, but there are studies being done right now that have proven marijuana has the potential to reduce tumor growth, not cause cancer.

    May 17, 2012 at 16:11 | Report abuse | Reply
  4. Ajax the Great

    This article is typical prohibitionist junk science. There is really no hard scientific evidence that a single joint on Friday or Saurtday night can impair the toker for days and impair one's abilities on Monday morning.


    Also, in a recent UCLA study cannabis has been shown NOT to cause cancer:


    I really wonder where this "doctor" got his degree. Someone who believes that doesn't exactly sound like someone I would want doing surgery on me.

    May 17, 2012 at 16:26 | Report abuse | Reply
  5. mary jane

    completely agree to zach's comment and want to add this,( http://thechart.blogs.cnn.com/2012/01/10/study-occasional-pot-smoking-not-as-damaging-as-cigarettes/ ) your own report in Jan 2012 on a study that smoking weed occasionally is NOT as harmful as smoking cigarettes. If you have similar topics where one source is giving you different information than the other on the same topic, why don't you reference that in your articles? CNN sucks so bad that their own writers don't read their own stories.

    May 17, 2012 at 16:27 | Report abuse | Reply
  6. Edward Gupta

    I am definately dissapointed about Dr, Gupta's comment....Bummer. He simply lied, or he does not have the actuall medical background. Bottom line, his medical integrity just got shot straight south-bound...Humm...How many other subjects will he (does he) also skew.? Statistically speaking?...probably a lot more than we'd believe...His marijuana comment is just wrong, and if he does not know it, then he is simply the type of doctor from which I switch away for lack of common sense and common truth...

    Edward Gupta

    May 17, 2012 at 17:11 | Report abuse | Reply
  7. H.R. Puffin-stuff W.D.

    Roshini Raj M.D., you have lost all credibility with me. Very disappointing. Where is the evidence to your claims? It is understood that, as a doctor, you will sometimes have to give answer based on your education rather than your experience.. but in this case I think you are refusing to look at the evidence and are relying on your social conditioning. Plesae do not confuse the two Mr. Roshini. It is one thing to fall for the disinformation yourself without researching the facts, it is another thing entirely to hand it out as advice. Shame on you.

    Here is what I suggest: Go out and find yourself some pot-head friends and do some bong hits.. You have more than you think. Quit bleating about this kind of misinformation, mention casually the harsh penalties for the countless non-violent potheads in prison.. and see what comes out of the woodwork. You just gain insight into a medicine more powerful and versatile than the chemical solutions you are pushing.

    May 17, 2012 at 18:48 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Onyxwolf

      Just had to applaud your comment! My favorite part was "a medicine more powerful and versatile than the chemical solutions you are pushing." The "chemical solutions" certainly have their place, but how about instead of pushing more and more synthetic opiates on patients, why can't you see that cannabis in addition can reduce overall use AND ADDICTION? I would like to add to Puffin-stuff's comment to say that you should also "casually mention" the fact that, unlike a lot of drugs you peddle, even the longest time users can revert to normal brain function after laying off of cannabis for just a couple weeks (pertaining to appropriately-aged ADULT users, as studies show that long term use during development can interfere with development, which I do believe; thus why I will always call for full legalization and REGULATION).

      Stop trying to make Marijuana look dangerous. The biggest difference between illicit drugs (ALL illicit drugs) and pharma drugs is that you have to a have Ph.D / M.D. in order to push the latter on your victims.

      May 18, 2012 at 15:10 | Report abuse |
  8. Gustin

    Better article than this trash: http://www.nytimes.com/2012/05/17/opinion/a-judges-plea-for-medical-marijuana.html?src=me&ref=general

    May 18, 2012 at 00:47 | Report abuse | Reply
  9. Dan

    Why smoke it? Eat it. It has health qualities as a food.

    May 22, 2012 at 22:14 | Report abuse | Reply

    Thanks for another informative site. Where else could I get that type of information written in such a perfect means? I've a project that I'm just now running on, and I have been at the look out for such information.

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Get a behind-the-scenes look at the latest stories from CNN Chief Medical Correspondent, Dr. Sanjay Gupta, Senior Medical Correspondent Elizabeth Cohen and the CNN Medical Unit producers. They'll share news and views on health and medical trends - info that will help you take better care of yourself and the people you love.