It’s another day of Q&A, where I have answers to your questions about medical marijuana. Today’s question comes from AJ of Orinda, CA. AJ writes…

Dr. Patel,

I use medical marijuana to treat my chronic back pain. However, I like to have a glass of wine or two in the evenings with my dinner and I’m wondering if it’s OK to drink alcohol while I’m using medical marijuana?



I get asked this question constantly!

It’ll help to look at a recent study that focused on what happens when you consume alcohol and marijuana at the same time.

The researchers had 19 people drink and/or vaporize varying doses of marijuana, alcohol or a placebo. Those that had a combination of both alcohol and marijuana, regardless of the amount, had a greater concentration of THC in their blood than those who just vaporized marijuana.

So, you’re probably wondering how alcohol increases THC levels in the blood? We’re not quite sure, but there are two schools of thought. One is that alcohol increases the absorption of marijuana. The other is that alcohol impacts how you metabolize marijuana. Either way, just know that if you’re mixing marijuana and alcohol, the levels of THC in your blood may be increased.

The most important point you can take away from this research is that alcohol is bad enough to impair your ability to drive. But combining marijuana and alcohol is even worse. So, a word to the wise…don’t vape, drink, and drive!




Research Referenced:

  • Clin Chem. 2015 Jun;61(6):850-69.

Over to You…Got Questions?

Go ahead and post ‘em in the comments section below and they just may get answered by yours truly (Dr. Patel) in a future blog.


Mixing Medical Marijuana