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In a study analyzing the lifestyles and behaviors of more than 1,500 heterosexual couples over six years, a researcher at Boston University School of Public Health found a connection between a man's marijuana use and his partner's risk of miscarriage early in pregnancy. The research includedweb-based surveys of couples actively trying to conceive.
When men used marijuana one or more times a week, their partner's risk of miscarriage doubled compared to the women whose male partners didn't use marijuana or used it less than once a week, researcher Alyssa Harlow reported to a meeting of the American Society for Reproductive Medicine last month.
Even when Harlow factored in whether or not the woman in the relationship used marijuana, the risk from the man's use remained, Boston University reported.
While the impact of women's lifestyle choices, including marijuana use, on pregnancy gets lots of scrutiny, this is the first time anyone has looked at whether men's marijuana use influences miscarriage risk, Harlow said.
"[G]iven that the human embryo is comprised 50 percent of the male's genes, there's been emerging interest in studying the role that men play," she told the university. "There are [cannabinoid] receptors in human testicular tissue and sperm, and when a man uses marijuana, THC binds to these receptors."
The study included men who used marijuana in a variety of forms, including smoking, vaping, and eating. It wasn't possible to tell whether certain uses presented a greater risk of miscarriage than others, Harlow said.
The findings are preliminary and must undergo a formal review by other scientists before they can be published. We'll have to wait for that and for other studies on this topic before we know for sure whether men's marijuana use really does increase miscarriage risk.
However, given what we know about the dangers of using marijuana during pregnancy and weed's potential impact on conception, it makes sense to factor in your partner's habits when considering how to improve your chances of a healthy pregnancy.
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