, Volume 84, Issue 2, pp 178–187 | Cite as

Effects of acute marijuana smoking on pulse rate and mood states in women

  • Barbara W. Lex
  • Jack H. Mendelson
  • Samuel Bavli
  • Kathy Harvey
  • Nancy K. Mello
Original Investigations


The effects of marijuana cigarette (1.8% THC) smoking on pulse rate and mood were studied under double-blind placebo-controlled conditions in 28 adult female volunteers during the follicular, luteal, and ovulatory phases of the menstrual cycle. Statistically significant increases in pulse rate, subjective levels of intoxication, and the POMS confusion factor occurred after marijuana smoking. However, no statistically significant differences for any measure were observed following marijuana smoking as a function of menstrual cycle phase. Subjects with a past history of intermittent marijuana use (five or less times weekly) had significantly higher pulse rates, subjective levels of intoxication, and POMS confusion factor scores than did subjects with a past history of regular (six or more times weekly) marijuana use. Persistence of marijuana-induced changes in pulse rate, intoxication, and confusion were also of longer duration for subjects with a past history of intermittent marijuana smoking. The influence of past history of marijuana use on marijuana-induced alterations in pulse rate, intoxication, and mood for females appears to be similar to males. These similarities are not attenuated as a function of the menstrualcycle phase of females.

Key words

Marijuana Women Acute effects Menstrual-cycle phases Smoking history Mood Intoxication Heart rate 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1984

Authors and Affiliations

  • Barbara W. Lex
    • 1
  • Jack H. Mendelson
    • 1
  • Samuel Bavli
    • 1
  • Kathy Harvey
    • 1
  • Nancy K. Mello
    • 1
  1. 1.Alcohol and Drug Abuse Research Center, Harvard Medical SchoolMcLean HospitalBelmontUSA

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