What is medical marijuana?
As seen on the web, medical marijuana is the name given to dried buds and leaves of varieties of the Cannabis sativa plant. It has been known to be helpful in treating symptoms, illnesses and conditions. The most common use for medical marijuana in the United States is for pain control. At this time the U.S Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has not recognized medical marijuana as medicine. However they have found that the marijuana plant contains chemicals that have shown positive results in both reducing and decreasing symptoms in illnesses. At this time further research is being conducted to determine the benefits that medical marijuana has on patients.
Medical conditions positively effected from medical marijuana
- Multiple Sclerosis
- Lou Gehrig’s Disease/ALS
- Interstitial cystitis
- Irritable bowel syndrome
- Alzheimer’s disease
- Rheumatoid Arthritis
Benefits of Medical Marijuana
- Helpful in treating nausea and vomiting from cancer chemotherapy
- Can be helpful in treatment of neuropathic pain (pain caused by damage nerves)
- Helps improve food intake
- Those who use may require less pain medicine
- THC and CBD slow growth/cause death in certain types of cancer cells growing in lab dishes and slow the spread of some forms of cancer
- Helps in managing anxiety
Risks of Medical Marijuana
- Can lower the users control over movement
- Cause disorientation
- Produce unpleasant thoughts or feeling of anxiety and paranoia
- Delivers harmful substances to users and those close by including many of the same substance found in tobacco smoke
- Marijuana plants come in different strains making it difficult to predict each users experience
- Chronic users can develop a dependence
How to take the next step in considering if medical marijuana is a good option for you?
- Your doctor: Reaching out to your primary care physician is a good place to start. Your family doctor may be able to prescribe medical marijuana or refer you to someone to provide you with better medical advice.
- Medical Marijuana specialist: A specialist can provide you with better information and understanding of how it can improve you current condition!
- Medical Marijuana clinic: A clinic will provide you with staffed members who specialize in medical marijuana therapy. A clinic will also include a dispensary where you will be provided with more information on what strains would be appropriate for you.
Refer to Medicinal Marijuana Association for additional information on this topic : http://www.medicinalmarijuanaassociation.com/medical-marijuana-blog
Useful Resources for those considering medical marijuana
Marijuana legalization status:
Medical Marijuana support groups:
In conclusion, at this time further research needs to be conducted to determine the value medical marijuana offers to those battling with an array of illnesses and conditions. After completing significant research on this topic, my findings both on the web and in scholarly journal articles have suggested similar conclusions. Research is weak. More research needs to be done to confirm whether medical marijuana is both safe, and useful. Many practicing doctors at this time are too unfamiliar with medical marijuana therefore not prescribing it to their patients. However as explained above in the video clips, medical marijuana is becoming much more popular and many patients are becoming increasingly interested in trialling medical marijuana for overall medical benefits!
Abuse, N. I. (n.d.). Marijuana as Medicine. Retrieved February 21, 2018, from https://www.drugabuse.gov/publications/drugfacts/marijuana-medicine
Ali, E. (2016). Medical Marijuana. Alive: Canada;s Natural Health & Wellness Magazine, (402), 49- 52.
Grinspoon, M. P. (2018, January 09). Medical marijuana. Retrieved February 21, 2018, from https://www.health.harvard.edu/blog/medical-marijuana-2018011513085
Spencer, N., Shaw, E., & Slaven, M. (2016). Medical cannabis use in an outpatient pallaiative care clinic: A retrospective char revicew. Journal of Pain Management, 9(4) , 507-513.
Vin-Raviv, N., Akinyemiju, T., Meng, Q., Sakhuja, S., & Hayward, R. (2017). Marijuana use and inpatient outcomes amongh hospitalized patients: analysis of the nationwide inpatient sample database. Cancer Medicine, 6(1), 320-329. Doi:10. 1002/ca4.968