Medical marijuana and the health benefits with different medical conditions.
In 1990, the cannabinoid receptor was first discovered in the human brain and by 1992 the entire endocannabinoid system had been uncovered. With this, science glimpsed the potential medicinal benefits of marijuana for the first time. Since then these potential medicinal uses have been well documented.
According to Harm Reduction Journal’s report titled “Harm Reduction – The Cannabis Paradox”, cannabinoids “regulate intercellular communication, especially in the immune and nervous systems,” as well as “modulate and coordinate tissues, organ and body systems (including cardiovascular, digestive, endocrine, excretory, immune… and respiratory systems).”
Medical Marijuana is one of our more useful medicines, as The Institute of Medicine points out in their book,Marijuana and Medicine: Assessing the Science Base (1999)
Cannabinoids likely have a natural role in pain modulation, control of movement, and memory. They go on to state: “The combination of cannabinoid drug effects (anxiety reduction, appetite stimulation, nausea reduction, and pain relief) suggests that cannabinoids would be moderately well suited for particular conditions, such as chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting and AIDS wasting.” http://medicalmarijuana.procon.org/sourcefiles/IOM_Report.pdf
ADD/ADHD – Those who have this development disorder have experienced symptomatic relief and a better quality of life. Medical marijuana has proven to be a very effective alternative to Ritalin.
ALZHEIMER’S DISEASE – Medical cannabis has been demonstrated to prevent cell death. The THC found in marijuana inhibits the primary marker of this terrible disease. When patients refuse food, medical marijuana can stimulate appetite, a positive result that carries over to many other conditions where a patient may experience a loss of appetite either from an ailment, or treatment.
ANOREXIA – Eating disorders have been widely to reported be kept under control by medical marijuana. This figure is twice as much as placebo.
ASTHMA – At the 2004 Cannabis Therapeutics Conference, Editor of the “Journal of Cannabis Therapeutics”, Dr. Ethan Russo spoke on the history of medical cannabis use to treat asthma, and found that because it relaxes bronchi and dilates one’s alveoli.
ANXIETY – In tests where symptoms have included anxiety, the use of medical marijuana has been shown to be very useful in relief from anxiety.
ARTHRITIS – Fifty percent of arthritic patients reported reduced pain and better sleep when medical cannabis was applied topically.
AUTISM – Marinol and medical cannabis have shown significant improvement in the classroom, according to one mother, and for her son’s overall. For children with autism, tinctures, elixirs, and baked goods, and cannabutter/oil can be incredibly useful delivery methods. (Autism Research Institute).
CANCER – “Possibly the greatest harm-reducing potential afforded by cannabinoids comes from their use by cancer patients,” according to Harm Reduction Journal, an online peer-reviewed medical journal. They go on to state “numerous cancer types are killed in cell cultures in animals by cannabinoids. For example, cannabinoids kill the cancer cells of various lymphoblastic malignancies such as leukemia, skin cancer, glioma, breast and prostate cancer… thyroid cancer, and colorectal cancer.” More research is needed however, as cannabinoids can promote cancer in other cells, particularly in the lungs.
CHRONIC PAIN – In the Institute of Medicine’s book Marijuana and Medicine, “For mild, moderate, and severe pain, the THC analogue was equivalent to 50 mg of codeine and superior to placebo and to 50 mg of secobarbital” (pg. 143). Pain caused by a variety of medical conditions such as multiple sclerosis or premenstrual cramps, has also been demonstrated to be treatable by medical marijuana.
CROHN’S DISEASE – There are many testimonials from patients who use medical marijuana, not only to relieve them from their pain caused from this disease, but also to control their bowel movements.
EPILEPSY – Patient testimonials, clinical experience, and animal studies all suggest medical marijuana is “beneficial adjunctive treatment in some patients with epilepsy.” This is from the report titled “Marijuana: an effective antiepileptic treatment in partial epilepsy?”
GLAUCOMA – There have been short-term studies that indicate medical marijuana lowers intraocular pressure, sometimes as much as 25%. According to the National Institute of Health, “some derivatives of marijuana lowered intraocular pressure when administered orally, intravenously, or by smoking, but not when topically applied to the eye.”
HIV/AIDS –A case study with 775 patients living with HIV/AIDS, the overall conclusion was that medical marijuana had a similar efficacy rate compared to the other medications they use to treat the patient’s same symptoms.
HEPATITIS C – As Result of a standardized survey on the medical use of cannabis products in the German-speaking area highlights, medical cannabis can be used to treat not only the nausea from the side effects of other treatment, but also the symptoms of Hepatitis C as well.
INFLAMMATION – Medical cannabis has proven successful in the treatment of several inflammation-related conditions, including edema and hyperalgesia.
LEUKEMIA – Researchers at Virginia Commonwealth University in Richland, VA demonstrated a reduction in the cell lines and when cultured.
LYMPHOMA – Not only has medical marijuana been shown to aid in appetite stimulation and nausea reduction, symptoms of lymphoma treatment, but Marijuana has also proven effective in reducing numbers of the lymphoma cells themselves.
MULTIPLE SCLEROSIS (MS) – Cannabinoids have been proven to function as ‘homeostatic modulators of the immune system’ which suggests therapeutic potential of medical marijuana to provide relief to people suffering from neurological diseases like MS (Harm Reduction Journal).
NAUSEA – There are dozens of medical conditions, including side effects of treatment, in which medical marijuana has proven to reduce nausea. This has been documented in hundreds of studies.
OSTEOPOROSIS – Reports from the Bone Laboratory of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem demonstrate certain cannabinoids to slow osteoporosis development, as well as stimulate bone growth while reducing bone loss. The National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America’s report that mice without the CB2 cannabinoid receptor (present in humans) experience ‘age-accelerated bone loss reminiscent of human osteoporosis,’
PSYCHIATRIC SYMPTOMS – There have been dozens of studies reflecting an improvement of one’s mood in reactive depression.
SLEEP APNEA – Researchers at the University of Illinois Department of Medicine illustrate a “potent reduction” of sleep (related) apnea in rats. There have also been other studies concluding that medical marijuana can aid in sleep and sometimes improve the quality of it.
SPINAL CHORD INJURY – One study finds that only 15-20 mg (Delta-9-THC) per day orally an effective and safe form of treatment of spasticity.
TOURETTE’S SYNDROME – In one study, a subject’s total tic severity score fell from 41 to 7. This finding led to further studies all solidifying the medicinal benefits of medical cannabis. One such study also made note that after long-term cannabinoid treatment, not a single subject had any adverse effects on their ‘learning, recall or verbal memory’ and goes on to recommend medical cannabis when other drugs fail to show similar results. (Muller-Vahl et al. 1999. Treatment of Tourette’s syndrome with delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol. (American Journal of Psychiatry)
Granny Storm Crow’s List – Here’s some of what I have found. All I’ve done is copy the URLs, then put them all in some semblance order for everyone to use as a reference. Please feel free to share this list with anyone who could benefit from it.