In 2018, the Government of Canada ended a 95-year prohibition on recreational cannabis use. Canadian data on the adverse outcomes associated with prenatal cannabis use dates back to the 1980’s and is based on maternal self-report. Since then, the potency of cannabis has increased 6- to 7-times and alternative forms of consumption including vaping, lotions, and edibles are increasing. As such, reported classical findings may not reflect the contemporary potency of cannabis products or use patterns. Previous reviews have shown cannabis use among the pregnant population to be increasing. Compared to past trends, more individuals today perceive cannabis to be safe. However, relationships between cannabis exposure and birth and developmental outcomes are uncertain, despite plausible biological associations.
There is a need for robust studies to evaluate the clinical utility of umbilical cord samples in detecting cannabinoid markers; allowing for the development of clinical cut-offs for these biomarkers. Having established clinical cut-offs is essential for screening to identify cannabis-exposed neonates at high risk for adverse outcomes immediately after birth. Dr. Bayrampour’s team is conducting a pilot prospective cohort study to examine prenatal cannabis exposure and early developmental outcomes (PreCeedo Study).
The specific objectives of this study are:
- To examine the feasibility and acceptability of conducting a large prospective cohort study, and;
- To explore the clinical utility of testing umbilical cord tissue to detect and quantify in-utero cannabis exposure.
Our research team includes investigators with expertise in pregnancy outcomes, midwifery, maternal mental health, obstetrics, epidemiology, pathology, laboratory medicine, pediatrics and neonatal and child development, and vulnerable perinatal populations. This team represents collaborators from the University of British Columbia, the BC Children’s and Women’s Hospital, the BC Ministry of Health and BC Provincial Toxicology Centre and has the appropriate expertise to execute the proposed project successfully and to facilitate dissemination of findings.
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