The growing number of patients who claim marijuana helped them drop their painkiller habit has intrigued lawmakers and emboldened advocates.

Some are pushing for cannabis as a treatment for the abuse of opioids and illegal narcotics like heroin, as well as an alternative to painkillers.

It's a tempting sell in Maine, hard hit by the painkiller and heroin crisis. But there's a problem: There is very little research showing marijuana works as a treatment for the addiction.

Advocates for medical marijuana argue a growing body of scientific literature supports the idea.

But the research falls short of concluding marijuana helps wean people off opioid painkillers and heroin. And many medical professionals say it's not enough for them to confidently prescribe it.