Q&A

Can I use cannabis 24 hours before a surgery?

"I’m having minor surgery and wondering if it is OK to use my vape pen within 24 hours????"


The main issue with using cannabis prior to surgery is that it can possibly interfere with the anesthesia as well as effect the amount of pain medicine that you may require after surgery. There is also the the issue that the vapor smoke could cause irritation of your lungs and make you more prone to coughing as well as throat irritation, especially if an endotracheal tube is used.

Chronic cigarette smokers tend to have more lung irritation and mucous production than non-smokers. There have been no studies, as far as I know, that have evaluated cannabis users as it relates to this for either smoking flower or vaporizing.

If you are vaping 24 hours prior to surgery the effects of the cannabis will most likely be gone. I would inform my surgeon and anesthesiologist however that you do use cannabis for medicinal purposes and when you have used it last.

Perry Solomon, MD

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