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Cannabis as Medicine? Overview

It is utterly mind-blowing that people have no idea that Cannabis has been part of the medical prescription landscape for over 20 years. That’s right T. G. A (Therapeutic Goods Administration) trialled and approved cannabis based medicines have been available as an option to alleviate, if only in small ways, some of the symptoms of a couple of diseases or help with recovery from treatment. However, the claims of this plant being a ‘miracle cure’ for just about everything, have existed for of 100 years… yet in no credible and advanced research has any of the properties of the Cannabis plant ‘cured’ anything, ever!

There is no argument that some components of this incredibly complex plant can have some therapeutic benefit, be it ever so small, but deriving such from the plant with out co-opting some of the more detrimental components has proven incredibly difficult. On top of that, the evidence emerging from latest science, sees that some of these therapies, do more harm than good, with the temporary alleviating of a symptom on one hand, and incurring along term genetic harm on the other!

Again if facts and evidence matter to your best-practice health care, then this is the space for you. Make informed decisions based on science, and not quackery!

Abstract

Marijuana is the most consumed illicit drug in the world, with over 192 million users. Due to the current legalization push of marijuana in the United States, there has been a lack of oversight regarding its public health policies, as marijuana advocates downplay the drug’s negative effects. This paper’s approach is from a public health perspective, focusing specifically on the cases of violence amongst some marijuana users. Here, we present 14 cases of violence with chronic marijuana users that highlight reoccurring consequences of: marijuana induced paranoia (exaggerated, unfounded distrust) and marijuana induced psychosis (radical personality change, loss of contact with reality). When individuals suffering from pre-existing medical conditions use marijuana in an attempt to alleviate their symptoms, ultimately this worsens their conditions over time. Although marijuana effects depend on the individual’s endocannabinoid receptors (which control behavioral functions, like aggression) and the potency level of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) in the drug, scientifically documented links between certain marijuana users and violence do exist. Wider public awareness of the risks and side effects of marijuana, as well as a more prudent health policy, and government agency monitoring of the drug’s composition, creation, and distribution, are needed and recommended.

Introduction: In the United States, ten states have legalized the recreational use of marijuana and over 20 states have decriminalized the recreational use of it. Recent reports suggest, however, that the increase of the recreational use of marijuana is causing detrimental effects to individuals, as well as the society as a whole [1,2,3]. These effects include, but are not limited to, the increase of violence, the increase of thriving underground marijuana markets, and increase in car accident claims after the legalization of marijuana where the recreational use of marijuana was legalized [1,2,3]. This is caused by lack of oversight. Marijuana is being legally sold with high THC concentration levels without taking into account its addictive qualities and adverse effects. On the other hand, and contrary to popular belief, marijuana is still illegal in the Netherlands and it is decriminalized. However, the consumption and storage of marijuana are limited by law and the approach taken by the Netherlands is to decriminalize the drug in order to be able to help individuals struggling with marijuana use. This prudent oversight has resulted in a decreased in violence and people are able to get the care they need to deal with addiction and become less prone to violence [1,2,3].

Furthermore, the consumption of marijuana is associated with an increase in violent behavior over the course of an individual’s lifespan, a high risk of psychosis for frequent users, an increase of cardiovascular diseases, and deterioration in health for individuals who have pre-existing mental health issues such as Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, social anxiety, and depression [4,5,6].

According to research studies, marijuana use causes aggressive behavior, causes or exacerbates psychosis, and produces paranoia. These effects have been illustrated through case studies of highly publicized incidents and heightened political profiles.

These cases contain examples of repeated illustrations of aggression, psychosis and paranoia by marijuana users and intoxication. Ultimately, without the use and intoxication of marijuana, the poor judgment and misperceptions displayed by these individuals would not have been present, reducing the risk for actions that result in senseless deaths.

For full research

(The mounting anecdotal evidence of this growing and pervasive reality are recorded at Attacker Smoked Cannabis: suicide and psychopathic violence in the UK and Ireland – "Those whose minds are steeped in cannabis are capable of quite extraordinary criminality.")

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World Federation Against Drugs

World Federation Against Drugs (W.F.A.D) Dalgarno Institute is a member of this global initiative. For evidence based data on best practice drug policy in the global context.
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Institute for Behavior and Health

The Institute for Behavior and Health, Inc. is to reduce the use of illegal drugs. We work to achieve this mission by conducting research, promoting ideas that are affordable and scalable...
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Drug Free Australia

Drug Free Australia Website. Drug Free Australia is a peak body, representing organizations and individuals who value the health and wellbeing of our nation...
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Drug Advisory Council of Australia (D.A.C.A)

Drug Advisory Council of Australia (D.A.C.A) Dalgarno Institute is an executive member of this peak body. For updates on current illicit drug issues.
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International Task Force on Strategic Drug Policy

(I.T.F.S.D.P) This international peak body continues to monitor and influence illicit drug policy on the international stage. Dalgarno Institute is a member organisation.
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Smart Approaches to Marijuana

Smart Approaches to Marijuana. SAM's leaders are among the world's most prominent voices calling for science-based marijuana education and awareness.

21 Be There

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Drug Free Futures

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Action Alcohol

The National Alliance for Action on Alcohol is a national coalition of health and community organisations from across Australia that has been formed with the goal of reducing alcohol-related harm.
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Greater Risk

Greater Risk Website - The younger they start the greater the risk...
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Rivermend Health

RiverMend Health is a premier provider of scientifically driven, specialty behavioral health services to those suffering from alcohol and drug dependency, dual disorders, eating disorders, obesity and chronic pain.
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Evidence-Based Practices Resource Center

SAMHSA is committed to improving prevention, treatment, and recovery support services for mental and substance use disorders.
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SAMHSA

SAMHSA is committed to improving prevention, treatment, and recovery support services for mental and substance use disorders.