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Supplementary Material for: Gastroenterologists’ Attitude Regarding Medical Cannabis for Inflammatory Bowel Diseases in Israel

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posted on 09.04.2021, 08:02 by Koslowsky B., Mazuz B., Ben-Ya’acov A., Neumark A., Bar-GilShitrit A., Goldin E.
Background: The use of medical cannabis (MC) for inflammatory bowel diseases (IBDs) is expanding. Current evidence does not support the efficacy of MC for reducing inflammation in IBD patients. Even so, many gastroenterologists encounter the issue of recommending use of MC to IBD patients. Methods: A Web-based survey was completed by 84 (34%) gastroenterologists in Israel. Results: Out of 84 physicians whom completed the questionnaire, 59 (70%) were male, 34 (40%) were under age 50 years, 71 (85%) were adult gastroenterologists, and 53 (63%) work mainly in a hospital. Of them, 15, 41, and 44% of physicians think that MC is very effective, mildly effective, and not effective at all, respectively. Physicians will commonly, rarely, and never recommend MC in 31, 47, and 22%, respectively. Older physicians (above age 50 years) were significantly more likely to have a positive attitude towards MC in both questions. When presented with a clinical scenario of a patient in deep remission, requesting to increase the dose, 32% would increase, 49% would maintain, and only 18% would stop prescribing MC altogether; 48% of physicians did not know the recommended initial dose for MC. Only 2 (2.5%) physicians initiated the use of MC to all patients. Female gastroenterologists were significantly more likely to initiate MC, p = 0.048. Conclusion: The use of MC for IBD patients is commonly encountered. Completely different attitudes regarding this treatment were seen. Age above 50 years and female physicians generally had a more positive attitude towards the use of MC. Guidelines and clear recommendations are needed.