Medical Cannabis


Interest in medical application of Cannabis sativa,

has increased continually during the last 20 years.

And it's for good reasons.

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A 1999 report from the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine supported the use of marijuana in medicine, leading to several regulatory medical colleges providing recommendations for its prescription to patients. An updated report in 2017 called for a national research agenda, improvement of research quality, improvement in data collection and surveillance efforts, and strategies for addressing barriers in advancing the cannabis agenda.

Proponents of medical cannabis support its use for a highly varied range of medical conditions, most notably in the fields of pain management and multiple sclerosis.

Medical Cannabis can be consumed by patients in a variety of ways including smoking, vaporizing, ingesting, or administering sublingually or rectally. The plant consists of more than 100 known cannabinoids, the main ones of relevance to medical applications being tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and cannabidiol (CBD). Synthetic forms of marijuana such as dronabinol and nabilone are also available as prescriptions in the USA and Canada.

Researchers have continued to study

the medical benefits of the cannabis plant and all it's components,

in spite of the legal barrier.

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A 1999 report from the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine supported the use of marijuana in medicine, leading to several regulatory medical colleges providing recommendations for its prescription to patients. An updated report in 2017 called for a national research agenda, improvement of research quality, improvement in data collection and surveillance efforts, and strategies for addressing barriers in advancing the cannabis agenda.

Proponents of medical cannabis support its use for a highly varied range of medical conditions, most notably in the fields of pain management and multiple sclerosis.

Medical Cannabis can be consumed by patients in a variety of ways including smoking, vaporizing, ingesting, or administering sublingually or rectally. The plant consists of more than 100 known cannabinoids, the main ones of relevance to medical applications being tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and cannabidiol (CBD). Synthetic forms of marijuana such as dronabinol and nabilone are also available as prescriptions in the USA and Canada.

Over the last decade, there has been an increased interest in the use of medical cannabis products in North America. It is estimated that over 3.5 million people in the USA are legally using medical marijuana, and a total of USD 6.7 billion was spent in North America on legal marijuana in 2016.

 The number of Canadian residents with prescriptions to purchase medical marijuana from Health Canada–approved growers tripled from 30,537 in 2015 to near 100,000 in 2016. With the legalization of recreational-use marijuana in parts of the USA and Canada in October 2018, the number of patients using marijuana for therapeutic purposes may become more difficult to track. The likely increase in the numbers of individuals consuming cannabis also necessitates a greater awareness of its potential benefits and otherwise harms.

Plant-based and plant-derived cannabis products are not properly monitored as many traditional medicines are because of the legal restrictions. Thereby increasing the uncertainty regarding its potential health risks to patients if any appears. While synthetic forms of cannabis are available by prescription, different cannabis plants and products contain varying concentrations of THC and CBD, making the effects of exposure unpredictable [9]. While short-lasting side effects including drowsiness, loss of short-term memory, and dizziness are relatively well known and may be considered minor, other possible effects (e.g., psychosis, paranoia, anxiety, infection, withdrawal) may be more harmful to patients.

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MEDICAL BENEFITS OF CANNABIS:

Researchers continue to study the medical benefits of marijuana. As it is effective for the treatment of

chronic pain due to its effect on the central nervous system, nausea, muscle spasms, especially those associated with certain conditions, such as multiple sclerosis, sleep issues(insomnia), and epilepsy. 

 

Cannabis may also help treat these conditions:

  • AIDS
  • Anorexia
  • Arthritis
  • Cancer
  • Chronic pain
  • Glaucoma
  • Migraine
  • Menstrual Cramp
  • Concentration
  • Autism.

 

Any other chronic medical symptom that limits the ability to conduct major activities or that can cause serious harm to a patient if not properly managed may be relieved by cannabis, especially when eating is involved. That is; It is useful in treating the conditions or side effects of diseases that cause loss of appetite, such as AIDS.

Medical marijuana relieves various symptoms making the user feel better with improved quality of life. It does not cure all diseases. But using it may change the outcome of a long discomforting ailment. 

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What are the risks of medical marijuana?

The debate over whether cannabis is physically or psychologically addictive is ongoing.

NIDA cites research that suggests 30 percent of cannabis users may have a cannabis use disorder. The research also states that people who smoke cannabis before the age of 18 are four to seven times more likely to develop a cannabis use disorder than adults. Researchers are split on whether smoking cannabis can lead to tobacco-related diseases as well. Cannabis smoke does contain some of the same elements as tobacco smoke and can cause chronic bronchitis and airway inflammation in people who use it regularly.

 

However, CBD oils, edibles, and other methods of using medical cannabis besides smoking have enormous potential benefits.

 

Over dependent on smoking cannabis, may have withdrawal symptom implication when a person stops using. Withdrawal symptoms may include:

 

  • Irritability
  • Insomnia
  • Mood difficulties                                                                     
  • Decreased appetite
  • Physical discomfort
  • Nausea
  • Restlessness.

 

 

 

Medical decisions about pain and symptom management should be made between the patient and his or her doctor, balancing evidence of benefit and harm to the patient, the patient’s preferences and values, and any laws and regulations that may apply.

 

For now, research on cannabis is still limited because of issues of the laws on legalization globally.  

 

Disclaimer: Information Purpose Only.


 

REFERENCE:

https://systematicreviewsjournal.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/s13643-019-1243-x

https://www.healthline.com/health/medical-marijuana#risks