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Alternative Meds


Jdean00x
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Hi All, I just want to ask if anyone ever tried using medical cannabis as an alternative meds? I have read many articles about medical marijuana and how it can help you in terms of chronic pain, bone injuries, eating disorder/anorexia, anxiety disorders and panic attacks, inflammation, even cancer and a lot more. Like this article about a marijuana strain from http://www.ilovegrowingmarijuana.com/cherry-limeade/ . Cbd and thc are also new to me and I don't even smoke. If this is true I cant find any solid conclusive evidence that speaks to its efficacy. Any personal experience or testimonial would be highly appreciated. Thanks

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You will notice that most of the existing evidence is anecdotal and propagated by advocates of cannabis use. There is some good evidence for cancer pain I believe and chemo related nausea.  Potentially migraine.  

In terms of psychiatric disorders there is no high quality evidence to support its use compared to many other medications and psychological treatments that have copious evidence. Some studies have shown evidence of harm. That alone should give people pause to ask what their motivation is for saying they are using something as a first line treatment that has such minimal evidence when there are so many other options with good evidence.  I’ve seen many people using medical cannabis for mental illness who have become psychotic and ended up in the emergency department or hospitalized. 

In particular, adolescents should steer clear as should anybody with a family or personal history of psychosis or bipolar disorder. 

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I am definitely no expert, but did a couple research review papers in undergrad (just coursework, not published). My impression were: that there is fairly strong evidence that cannabis can significantly improve patients ability to cope with pain and nausea while receiving chemotherapy, but any other claims about its usefulness are anecdotal and poorly supported in the primary literature. Smoking cannabis is carcinogenic and a lot of research strongly supports associations between cannabis use and various mental health disorders (particularly depression, schizophrenia, and bipolar disorder). Some causal evidence exists, but there really needs to be more longitudinal research done to truly support causation as opposed to correlation. Finally, I recall some evidence that cannabis stunts development of the prefrontal cortex and executive function in users under ~age 25. 

If you're at university, try using the libraries research center to look for peer reviewed articles - systematic review and meta-analysis are a good place to start. If you're not in university, Google Scholar can help you find some peer reviewed open access journals. 

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  • 4 years later...

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