Medicinal Marijuana [medical cannabis]
Medicinal marijuana refers to cannabis used as a medical therapy to treat disease and alleviate symptoms, particularly pain, muscle spasticity (from multiple sclerosis and epilepsy), nausea and vomiting in chemotherapy and HIV/AIDS patients. It has also been shown to reduce optical pressure due to glaucoma. It can increase appetite in those for whom anorexia is a problem (such as cancer patients with nausea and general lack of appetite from chemotherapy).
At this writing, 23 states and the District of Columbia have passed medical marijuana laws legalizing the use and production of medical marijuana for qualifying patients under state law. However, medical use of marijuana remains illegal under federal law, and patients in the remaining states are without any legal access at all. Even in states where medical marijuana laws exist, patients and providers are vulnerable to arrest and interference from federal law enforcement. It has been used to treat
- AIDS (HIV) & AIDS wasting
- Alzheiber’s disease
- Asthma/breathing disorders
- Crohn’s/gastrointestinal disorders
- Hepatitis C
- Multiple sclerosis/muscle spasms
- Psychological conditions
- Tourette’s syndrome
- Terminal illness
Medical marijuana can be smoked, eaten in food, or made into a tincture for oral consumption. Opponents of medical marijuana use point to impaired driving ability, psychological changes and lung injury as drawbacks of its use.