Cannabis is known as a pharmaceutical remedy since the XIV century. It was cultivated in monasteries for the needs of the state. Physicians in India and China used the hemp as a pain reliever, antispasmatic and antinauseant drug in the 18th century BC. There are still no clinical trials about the possible practicability of using cannabis.
What is medical marijuana?
Hemp is a yearling herbaceous dioecious plant aboriginal to Central Asia. Currently cultivated in different parts of the world. Cannabis during the growth produces resin with cannabinoids. Cannabinoids are active chemicals, which influence CNS, immune function, and effectively relieve pain. In total there are about than 60 cannabinoids and only 2 of them: cannabidiol (CBD) and delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) are explored.
The Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs of the UN includes cannabis in the list of narcotic plants and obliges the governments of the member countries to strictly control its cultivation.
In accordance with the medicinal marijuana definition relegates the use of cannabinoids with the view of managing illnesses or to ease their signs. The majority of medical communities and associations insist against the use of cannabis as a medicinal remedy.
Medical marijuana alleviates sings, but does not cure diseases.
- In August 2015 it was stated by the National Cancer Institute in the US that cannabinoids are advantageous in managing the concurrent effects of cancer. Therewithal, marijuana lessens pain and the dosage rate of opioids, provide an antiemetic response during chemotherapy. The pain alleviating effect of marijuana is essential for patients with HIV/AIDS, disseminated sclerosis, arthritis and hepatitis C.
- THC inhibits the potency of cells that damage brain neurons in Alzheimer’s disease.
- The ability of marijuana to decrease the opthalmotonous tension scientists discovered in the 60’s of the 20th century. Drops with THC cope with dilated pupils, prevent blindness and slow the progression of the illness.
- Cannabis is used as an aphrodisiac and helps with premature ejaculation and improves the erection.
- Scientists from the University of Epilepsy (New York) reported that cannabidiol suppresses seizures, epileptic included.
- In 2013, JAMA declared the ability of medical marijuana to regulate blood sugar levels in patients with diabetes.
- THC prevents sickness and vomiting.
- Active cannabis compounds stop prostate cancer.
- THC treats inflammation in bowel preventing the bacteria penetration.
- Сannabinoids calm the immune system, which may help to treat autoimmune abnormalities, e.g., systemic lupus erythematosus.
Researchers suggest that cannabis is useful for the cure of following diseases, though further researches are needed:
- Abuse of alcohol
- Huntington’s disease
- Crescent cell anemia
- Tourette’s Syndrome
Medical marijuana and sleep
Cannabis relieves spasms, which, provides good and calm sleep. Сannabinoids ease muscle spasms, which arise when the patient lies in bed. The disease is known as restless legs syndrome.
Deep profound marijuana sleeping is related to the stress and muscles relax.
Mix hops, chamomile and lavender with marijuana for sleep. Terpenoids react actively to CBN and markedly enhance the sedative effect. A cup of chamomile tea or lavender foam for a bath as well as melatonin, 5-HTP and valerian root can also help in improving sleep.
The use of cannabinoids is dangerous due to the harmful impact:
- rapid heartbeat;
- neuromuscular block;
- gastrointestinal disorders
- acute memory loss
The use of cannabis leads to the addiction. A focusing illusion develops, characterized by a strong desire to take the drug. With prolonged use, a mild physical dependence appears, manifested by an abstinence syndrome. Irritancy, anxiety, a decrease in mood, lack of appetite, insomnia, shiver, tremors, carebaria and heavy weight on the chest are observed. The duration of the syndrome varies from 3-5 days to several weeks.
Medical marijuana is available in various ways. THC is inhaled with smoke, taken in tablets or as a sublingual spray. Plant is added to food or drinks. The tablet has a very weak analgesic effect. Synthetic analogs nabilone and dronabinol are extremely successful as a means of fighting nausea during cancer treatment. Dronabinol is released in capsules as an appetite stimulant and antiemetic. Drugs are released by special prescribing.
In conformity with the NIDA, marijuana itself should not be used as a medical remedy as hemp contains numerous compounds with an unknown health impact. And the damaging effect on cognitive functions limits its usefulness.
- Cerdá, Magdalena, et al. “Medical marijuana laws in 50 states: investigating the relationship between state legalization of medical marijuana and marijuana use, abuse and dependence.” Drug & Alcohol Dependence 120.1 (2012): 22-27.
- Wall, Melanie M., et al. “Adolescent marijuana use from 2002 to 2008: higher in states with medical marijuana laws, cause still unclear.” Annals of epidemiology 21.9 (2011): 714-716.
- Hill, Kevin P. “Medical marijuana for treatment of chronic pain and other medical and psychiatric problems: a clinical review.” Jama313.24 (2015): 2474-2483.