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Marijuana and Surgery

Dear Ask The Doctor:
Can having marijuana in your system effect having surgery and if so how long should you abstain before surgery? I have surgery on my leg in three days and i was just wondering.


Any drug whether illicit, prescribed or over-the-counter should be reported to your doctor before undergoing any surgical procedure. As it pertains to marijuana, it may affect how the medication used for anesthesia work. Another factor to be considered is that airways of smokers are more reactive to the gases used in anesthesia than non-smokers. This increases the likelihood of an anesthetic complication. It is generally advised to stop smoking (regardless of what is smoked) at least two weeks prior to undergoing general anesthesia.

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