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Legalizing Marijuana Study

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Young and middle aged adults who use marijuana could be putting themselves at risk for heart-related complications even death. That's according to a new study published in the Journal of the American Heart Association.

French researchers looked at about 2,000 health complications involving marijuana: 35 were cardiovascular-related, including 20 heart attacks and 9 deaths.

"We used to think marijuana was a very safe drug, but as more and more marijuana is being used there have been more identifiable cases of cardiovascular complications. It can increase heart rate and this can increase the demand for oxygen by the heart."

Cardiologist Robert Kloner believes the number of cardiovascular complications from marijuana is even higher. "There's probably an underreporting that's occurring, so not everyone that has a cardiac event that uses marijuana is going to report that.

26-year-old Dave Weaver smokes marijuana regularly and says the new findings won't keep him from lighting up. "It's like drinking a beer at the end of the day, just helps you calm down, relax, and take the stress off."

As more states legalize marijuana for recreational and medical use, some experts are calling for a national system to track health complications related to marijuana.  

In the U.S., the recreational use of marijuana is only legal in Colorado and Washington state.
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