Foreign medical students in eastern europe: Knowledge, attitudes and beliefs about medical cannabis for pain management

Vsevolod Konstantinov, Alexander Reznik, Masood Zangeneh, Valentina Gritsenko, Natallia Khamenka, Vitaly Kalita, Richard Isralowitz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Objective: To assess the knowledge, attitudes, and beliefs of foreign students toward the use of medical cannabis (MC) for pain management. Methods: This study uses data collected from 549 foreign students from India (n = 289) and Middle Eastern countries mostly from Egypt, Iran, Syria, and Jordan (n = 260) studying medicine in Russia and Belarus. Data collected from Russian and Belarusian origin medical students (n = 796) were used for comparison purposes. Pearson’s chi-squared and t-test were used to analyze the data. Results: Foreign students’ country of origin and gender statuses do not tend to be correlated with medical student responses toward medical cannabis use. Students from Russia and Belarus who identified as secular, compared to those who were religious, reported more positive attitudes toward medical cannabis and policy change. Conclusions: This study is the first to examine the attitudes, knowledge, and beliefs toward medical cannabis among foreign students from India and Middle Eastern countries studying in Russia and Belarus, two countries who oppose its recreational and medicine use. Indian and Middle Eastern students, as a group, tend to be more supportive of MC than their Russian and Belarusian counterparts. These results may be linked to cultural and historical reasons. This study provides useful information for possible medical and allied health curriculum and education purposes.

Original languageEnglish
Article number2137
Pages (from-to)1-9
Number of pages9
JournalInternational Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
Issue number4
StatePublished - 2 Feb 2021


  • Foreign medical students
  • Medical cannabis
  • Pain management

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pollution
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis


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