(HealthDay News) — A majority of clinicians appears to support the use of medicinal marijuana, according to research published in the May 30 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

Jonathan N. Adler, M.D., and James A. Colbert, M.D., associate editors for the New England Journal of Medicine, describe the results of polling and comments in an interactive feature in which experts discussed the use of medicinal marijuana for a 68-year old woman with metastatic breast cancer.

The authors report that, although marijuana is illegal in most countries, 76% of all 1,446 votes, cast in 72 countries, were in favor of marijuana use for medicinal purposes. Within North America, 76% of voters supported medicinal marijuana use. More than 50% of voters supported marijuana use in each state and province with at least 10 voters, with the exception of Utah, where only 1% of 76 voters supported marijuana use. In Pennsylvania, 96% of 107 votes supported the use of medicinal marijuana. The results in Latin America and Europe were similar, with 78% of voters supporting marijuana use. Individual perspectives expressed within the 118 comments were polarized.

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“In sum, the majority of clinicians would recommend the use of medicinal marijuana in certain circumstances,” the authors write. “Large numbers of voices from all camps called for more research to move the discussion toward a stronger basis of evidence.”

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