The usage and acceptability of medicinal cannabis are evolving, as seen by the expanding number of states that have legalized it for specific medical purposes. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is considering how it might support the scientific rigor of medicinal cannabis claims, and it is now reviewing public data on safety and abuse potential. If you want to learn more about using marijuana for medicinal purposes, here are 5 things you need to know.

What is medical marijuana?

Marijuana comes from the plant Cannabis Sativa. It is best known as a drug that people smoke or ingest. Marijuana possession is forbidden under federal law. Nevertheless, medical marijuana refers to the use of marijuana to treat certain medical ailments. Over half of the states in the United States have approved marijuana for medical use.

Important facts about medical marijuana

1.    Constituents

Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and cannabidiol (CBD) are the two main chemicals that contribute to marijuana’s therapeutic potential (CBD). THC, the most active component in marijuana, is found in amounts ranging from 5% to 15% in natural marijuana plants. Dosage standardization is problematic because of the heterogeneity in THC-to-CBD ratios across marijuana plants. 

THC, marijuana’s primary psychoactive component, binds to cannabinoid receptors in the brain, causing feelings of euphoria, altered sense of time, analgesia, increased appetite, and memory impairment. CBD is a non-psychoactive serotonin receptor agonist that also has anti-inflammatory and neuroprotective properties.

2.    Therapeutic uses

Medical marijuana has possible benefits for various health conditions. Different state laws vary on the kind of condition that qualifies individuals for treatment with medical cannabis. If you are considering medical marijuana for your condition, it is important to check your state laws first.

You may qualify for treatment using medical marijuana if you have any of the following conditions:

  • Alzheimer’s disease
  • Epilepsy and seizures
  • Severe and chronic pain
  • Severe vomiting and nausea as a result of cancer treatment
  • Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS)

3.    Adverse effects and safety issues

Medical marijuana may have the following effects on your body:

  • A fast heartbeat.
  • Dizziness
  • Memory and concentration problems
  • Increases the risks of heart attack
  • Increased appetite
  • Addiction
  • Mental illness and hallucinations

4.    Pharmacokinetics

THC’s pharmacokinetics differ depending on how it is administered. Medical marijuana can be taken orally or via inhalation. After 15 to 30 minutes, inhaled THC reaches maximum plasma concentration, lasting two to three hours. Effects begin 30 to 90 minutes after oral administration and can last up to 12 hours.

5.    Implications for health care providers

Physicians can only certify the use of medical marijuana, not prescribe it. Patients seeking certification must have a medical condition for which medicinal marijuana is effective in high-quality studies. Patients must have tried first- and second-line medications, including FDA-approved cannabis, but had no success. They should have a thorough examination, which should include a discussion of the dangers and advantages of medicinal marijuana. 

They should also be informed that it is not endorsed by most major medical organizations, and insurance companies will not cover it.  

 How do you take it?

You can take medical marijuana in the following ways:

  • Smoking
  • Inhaling through a vaporizer
  • Eat it in a brownie or a lollipop.
  • Use it as a lotion, spray, oil, or cream on your skin.
  • Using a dropper, place a few drops of liquid under your tongue.

How do you get medical marijuana?

To obtain medicinal marijuana in the States where it is allowed, you must have a written statement from your health care physician. Your name will be added to a list that allows you to purchase marijuana from a licensed merchant.

To find out more about how to get medical marijuana in Louisana, contact our team and fill out the form below: 

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