Current Addiction Reports

, Volume 4, Issue 2, pp 184–193 | Cite as

Co-use of Alcohol and Cannabis: A Review

  • Ali M. Yurasek
  • Elizabeth R. Aston
  • Jane Metrik
Alcohol (R Leeman, Section Editor)
Part of the following topical collections:
  1. Topical Collection on Alcohol


Purpose of Review

The purpose of this review is to provide an overview of the existing literature on the relationship between the co-use of cannabis and alcohol including (1) epidemiology, comorbidity, and associated consequences of cannabis and alcohol use disorders; (2) preclinical and clinical laboratory studies examining behavioral pharmacology of cannabis and alcohol co-use; and (3) clinical outcomes related to co-use.

Recent Findings

Findings from the literature reviewed suggest that the co-use of alcohol and cannabis is associated with additive performance impairment effects, higher and more frequent consumption levels, increased social and behavioral consequences such as driving while impaired, and greater likelihood of the experiencing comorbid substance use and mental health disorders. Furthermore, co-use may be associated with worse clinical outcomes, yet there are few studies examining the development and evaluation of interventions on reducing the co-use of cannabis and alcohol.


There is a need for more rigorous and longitudinal research studies on the co-use of cannabis and alcohol to glean a more complete understanding of the relationship between the two substances. Findings can be used to develop and refine intervention strategies to successfully reduce cannabis and alcohol co-use.


Cannabis Alcohol Co-use Behavioral pharmacology Comorbidity Clinical outcomes 


Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of Interest

Dr. Ali M. Yurasek declares that she has no conflicts of interest. Dr. Elizabeth R. Aston declares an NIDA grant. Dr. Jane Metrik declares an NIAAA grant.

Human and Animal Rights and Informed Consent

This article does not contain any studies with human or animal subjects performed by any of the authors.


Papers of particular interest, published recently, have been highlighted as: • Of importance •• Of major importance

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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ali M. Yurasek
    • 1
  • Elizabeth R. Aston
    • 2
  • Jane Metrik
    • 2
    • 3
  1. 1.College of Health and Human Performance, Department of Health Education and BehaviorUniversity of FloridaGainesvilleUSA
  2. 2.Center for Alcohol and Addiction Studies, Brown University School of Public HealthProvidenceUSA
  3. 3.Providence Veterans Affairs Medical CenterProvidenceUSA

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