Marihuana as Medicine

“BETWEEN 1840 and 1900, European and American medical journals published more than 100 articles on the therapeutic use of the drug known then as Cannabis indica (or Indian hemp) and now as marihuana.

It was recommended as an appetite stimulant, muscle relaxant, analgesic, hypnotic, and anticonvulsant. As late as 1913 Sir William Osler recommended it as the most satisfactory remedy for migraine.

Today the 5000-year medical history of cannabis has been almost forgotten.

Its use declined in the early 20th century because the potency of preparations was variable, responses to oral ingestion were erratic, and alternatives became available—injectable opiates and, later, synthetic drugs such as aspirin and barbiturates.

In the United States, the final blow was struck by the Marihuana Tax Act of 1937. Designed to prevent nonmedical use, this law made cannabis so difficult to obtain for medical purposes that it was removed from the pharmacopeia.”

http://jama.jamanetwork.com/article.aspx?articleid=388943#Abstract

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[Marihuana and cannobinoids as medicaments].

“Biological activity of cannabinoids is caused by binding to two cannabinoid receptors CB1 and CB2. Psychoactive is not only tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) but also: cannabidiol, cannabigerol or cannabichromen.

Formerly, the usefulness of hemp was assessed in the relation to temporary appeasement of the symptoms of some ailments as nausea or vomiting.

Present discoveries indicates that cannabis-based drugs has shown ability to alleviate of autoimmunological disorders such as: Multiple sclerosis (MS), Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) or inflammatory bowel disease.

Another studies indicates that cannabinoids play role in treatment of neurological disorders like Alzheimer disease or Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) or even can reduce spreading of tumor cells.

Cannabinoids stand out high safety profile considering acute toxicity, it is low possibility of deadly overdosing and side-effects are comprise in range of tolerated side-effects of other medications.

In some countries marinol and nabilone are used as anti vomiting and nausea drug. First cannabis-based drug containg naturally occurring cannabinoids is Sativex. Sativex is delivered in an mucosal spray for patients suffering from spasticity in MS, pain relevant with cancer and neuropathic pain of various origin.

Cannabis side-effects varies and depend from several factors like administrated dose, rout of administration and present state of mind. After sudden break from long-lasting use, withdrawal symptoms can appear, although they entirely disappear after a week or two.”

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23421098

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Cannabinoids in medicine: A review of their therapeutic potential.

“In order to assess the current knowledge on the therapeutic potential of cannabinoids, a meta-analysis was performed through Medline and PubMed up to July 1, 2005. The key words used were cannabis, marijuana, marihuana, hashish, hashich, haschich, cannabinoids, tetrahydrocannabinol, THC, dronabinol, nabilone, levonantradol, randomised, randomized, double-blind, simple blind, placebo-controlled, and human. The research also included the reports and reviews published in English, French and Spanish.

For the final selection, only properly controlled clinical trials were retained, thus open-label studies were excluded. Seventy-two controlled studies evaluating the therapeutic effects of cannabinoids were identified. For each clinical trial, the country where the project was held, the number of patients assessed, the type of study and comparisons done, the products and the dosages used, their efficacy and their adverse effects are described.

 Cannabinoids present an interesting therapeutic potential as antiemetics, appetite stimulants in debilitating diseases (cancer and AIDS), analgesics, and in the treatment of multiple sclerosis, spinal cord injuries, Tourette’s syndrome, epilepsy and glaucoma.”

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16540272

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