Marijuana use in transplantation: A call for clarity

the Executive Committee of the Infectious Diseases Community of Practice of the American Society of Transplantation

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

23 Scopus citations


Transplant centers have varying policies for marijuana (MJ) use in donors, transplant candidates, and recipients. Rationales for these differences range from concerns for fungal complications, impaired adherence, and drug interactions. This paper reviews the current status of MJ policies and practices in transplant centers and results of a survey sent to the American Society of Transplantation (AST) membership by the Executive Committee of the AST Infectious Diseases Community of Practice.The purpose of the survey was to compare policies and concerns of MJ use to actual observed complications. Of the 3321 surveys sent, 225 members (8%) responded. Transplant centers varied in their approval processes, differing even in organ types within the same institutions. Furthermore, there was discordance among transplant centers in their perceived risks of marijuana use as opposed to complications actually observed. An increasing number of states continue to legalize medical and recreational MJ resulting in widespread availability. Further research is needed to assess the validity of concerns for complications of MJ use in potential donors and recipients. Ultimately, standardized guidelines should be established based on studies and evidence-based criteria to assist transplant programs in their policies around the use of cannabis in their donors and recipients.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere13456
JournalClinical Transplantation
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 2019


  • cannabis
  • marijuana
  • transplantation


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