Last updated on: 7/6/2015 | Author:

Deepak Cyril D'Souza, MBBS, MD Biography

Professor of Psychiatry at Yale School of Medicine and Director of the Schizophrenia Research Program
Not Clearly Pro or Con to the question "Should Marijuana Be a Medical Option?"

“For most qualifying conditions, approval has relied on low-quality scientific evidence, anecdotal reports, individual testimonials, legislative initiatives, and public opinion. Imagine if other drugs were approved through a similar approach… For most of the conditions that qualify for medical marijuana use, the evidence fails to meet FDA standards…

If the states’ initiative to legalize medical marijuana is merely a veiled step toward allowing access to recreational marijuana, then the medical community should be left out of the process, and instead marijuana should be decriminalized.

Conversely, if the goal is to make marijuana available for medical purposes, then it is unclear why the approval process should be different from that used for other medications. Evidence justifying marijuana use for various medical conditions will require the conduct of adequately powered, double-blind, randomized, placebo/active controlled clinical trials to test its short- and long-term efficacy and safety.”

Cowritten with Mohini Ranganathan, “Medical Marijuana: Is the Cart Before the Horse?,” Journal of the American Medical Association, June 2015

Theoretical Expertise Ranking:
     Key Experts
Physicians [Physicians are the "key experts" in the medical marijuana debate because the issue is thought by many to be ultimately based on the medical value and risks of marijuana, and Physicians, with their training and clinical work, should (at least in theory) have the best knowledge of marijuana's medical value and risks.] [Note: Key Experts definition varies by sites that have this designation.]
Involvement and Affiliations:
  • Professor of Psychiatry, Yale School of Medicine
  • Director Schizophrenia Research Program Veterans Affairs Connecticut Healthcare System (VACHS)
  • Director, Neurobiological Studies Unit, VACHS
  • Director, Veterans Affairs Schizophrenia Research Clinic
  • Interim Chief of Psychiatry, VA Connecticut Healthcare System, 2010
  • MD, State University New York at Brooklyn, 1992
  • MBBS, St. John’s Medical College (India), 1986
  • None found