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Monday, October 7, 2019

Claims are made every day about the diseases and conditions that medical grade marijuana can treat and cure. While some claims often hold no evidence to prove that they are valid, others hold evidence piled to the roof that can prove their validity. With the legal controversy surrounding the medical benefits of medical grade marijuana, research is not easy to carry out. Medical marijuana is used to treat a myriad of diseases and conditions that vary from insomnia all the way to Chrons Disease and hundreds in between. So out all things that medical cannabis can treat, which are most effectively treated or even cured with its use, and how does it work to do so?

Post procedure, Chronic, and Injury Related Pain

On any given day, an average of 115 American deaths are attributed to an opioid overdose. The sad reality of this disease is that it often times begins with a simple short term prescription following dental work, surgeries, or injuries. While the debate remains about what point addiction turns from a choice into a disease that one cannot control, what we do know is that medical grade marijuana is a viable alternative route to treating pain that results from those causes. Statistically, painkiller addition rates are lower in patients who use medical cannabis in addition to other methods or by itself to alleviate pain. In addition, medical cannabis is much less toxic and disease inducing to vital organs such as the kidneys and liver like other painkillers are.

Medical grade marijuana has properties that make it a useful analgesic to treat pain thanks to the edocannabinoid system. While this is a complex thing to explain outside of the medical field, the gist of it is that exogenous cannabinoids being distributed through out the body will trigger pain inhibition. A complicated process ensues in the body and nerves where pain messages are stopped upon the ingestion (through whichever method) of medical grade marijuana. Millions of studies have been carried out and continue to be conducted to link the elements of pain relief from cannabinoids together and reach a better understanding of why it works to alleviate pain.

Cancer

It is widely known that medical cannabis is frequently used by cancer patients to alleviate unpleasant side effects from treatment, it is not so widely known that medical grade marijuana has been shown effective to target and destroy certain cancer cells. Cannabinoids have been shown to stop the growth of some types of breast cancer tumors as well as glial type tumors. Cannabinoids have also proven to be able to degrade the growth processes of certain types of leukemia and lymphoma cells. In addition, medical cannabis has been proven to be able to impair the aggressive invasion properties of some lung carcinoma cells. Furthermore CBD has been seen in studies to stop the cell division process of particular kinds of endocrine tumor cells and is able to protect the DNA in colorectal cells from mutations that cause cancer.

Anorexia

Anorexia has been characterized over time by a disorder within the brain that involves the critical parts of the brain that are involved in the feelings we get from eating food. Because of the disruptions in these processes, the development of an unhealthy relationship with food and eating is a big element of anorexia. A combination of effects from medical cannabis such as reduction in anxiety that anorexics have in relation to food and eating with an increase in physical appetite that is typically absent from anorexics, play a role in treating anorexia. Studies conducted on patients have resulted in weight gain when medical grade marijuana is combined with psychotherapy to treat anorexia.

Insomnia and Sleep Disorders

It is estimated that 1 in 5 Americans will suffer with insomnia at some point in their lifetime. Characterized by difficulty falling asleep, staying asleep or having a sufficient restful sleep. There are two main ways that medical cannabis has been proved to treat insomnia. The first way is that medical grade marijuana treats the underlying problem that is the primary cause of the insomnia, whether it is a medical problem or a mental condition that is triggering insomnia. The second way that medical grade marijuana is proven to treat insomnia is by its effect of causing drowsiness. Certain types of marijuana strains are considered to be sedative at specified doses offering a feasible alternative to hangover inducing sleep aids and other treatments that have shown to be ineffective for a given patient.

Epilepsy and Seizure Diseases

Perhaps the most widely known disease that has been treated to the current day by medical cannabis is epilepsy. A challenging disease that is characterized by frequent and recurrent seizures, epilepsy has many variations and can be extremely difficult to cope with if traditional treatments are not effective. Medical grade marijuana and variants of cannabinoids have been shown in studies to reduce and some times even totally stop the seizure activity in particular types of epilepsy patients. This may be the most studied treatment application of medical grade marijuana varieties to date, as it has reached the hands of the FDA in an oral CBD form.

Glaucoma

Mainly caused by a higher then normal pressure level within the eye, glaucoma cause patients to lose their vision and even go completely blind. The best way to treat glaucoma patients is to decrease the level pressure inside of the eye. Often times glaucoma is treated by surgery, medication, or treatments with laser technology. The medication that lowers pressure in the eye is most often a topical eye drop solution, but this is not suitable for all patients. Smoking medical grade marijuana causes a pressure lowering effect on the eyes, in both glaucoma patients and people without the disease.

Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and other Anxiety Variations

Post traumatic stress disorder effects millions of Americans and disrupts their daily lives and basic abilities. Many PTSD patients are veterans who have been through disturbing military combat experiences and victims sexual assaults. Research on medical grade marijuana’s effects on PTSD patients revealed that on average individuals who suffer from PTSD have lower levels of the naturally occurring compound that initiates the action of the same receptors that medical cannabis also has the ability to activate. The same low levels of this compound was similarly found in other anxiety disorders such as GAD and OCD.

While large number of studies and extended research has been done to date to back up the pharmaceutical benefits of medical grade marijuana for each of these diseases, there is more work to be done. Navigation of the legal aspect of medical grade marijuana continues to be a challenge researchers and patients face in conducting studies on the medical uses of it. However, even with those challenges, medical cannabis has influenced the quality of life for tens of thousands that suffer from the aforementioned diseases, and remains a hopeful and promising potential avenue for millions of others.

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