Tag: Science and Technology

Study: Medical Marijuana Patients Reduce Their Use of Opioids

VICTORIA, BC — Patients with legal access to medical cannabis reduce their use of opioids, benzodiazepines, and other prescription drugs, according to data published online ahead of print in The International Journal of Drug Policy.

Researchers at the University of Victoria and the University of British Columbia assessed the use of medical cannabis and prescription drugs in a cohort of 277 patients registered in the Canadian government’s medical marijuana program.

Sixty-three percent of the respondents reported substituting cannabis for prescription medications. Patients were most likely to report using cannabis in lieu of opioids (32 percent).

Patients also reported using cannabis in place of benzodiazepines (16 percent) and anti-depressants (12 percent).

Respondents were most likely to reduce their use of prescription medications because they believed that cannabis posed fewer adverse side effects. Respondents also reported that “cannabis is safer” than prescription alternatives and that it provides “better symptom management.”

Authors concluded:

“The finding that patients using cannabis to treat pain-related conditions have a higher rate of substitution for opioids, and that patients self-reporting mental health issues have a higher rate of substitution for benzodiazepines and antidepressants has significant public health implications. In light of the growing rate of morbidity and mortality associated with these prescription medications, cannabis could play a significant role in reducing the health burden of problematic prescription drug use.”

The study’s conclusions are consistent with those of prior reports finding that patients with legal access to cannabis spend less money on conventional prescription drugs, and are less likely to use or abuse opioids.

Full text of the study, “Medical cannabis access, use, and substitution for prescription opioids and other substances: A survey of authorized medical cannabis patients,” appears in The International Journal of Drug Policy.

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Thank you for visiting MDMMCC.com, the premier Medical Marijuana Certification Center in Maryland. Our Mission at the Maryland Medical Marijuana Certification Clinics (MDMMCC) is to provide the certification necessary for qualified patients to obtain Medical Marijuana in compliance with the Maryland Medical Marijuana Laws in the State of Maryland.  MDMMCC will have offices open throughout Maryland.

Study: Cannabis Extract Associated with Improved Survival Rates in Glioma Patients

Glioma in the left parietal lobe (brain CT scan), WHO grade 2. (Wikimedia/Mikhail Kalinin)

LONDON — Brain tumor patients treated with cannabis extracts possessed increased one-year survival rates compared to those who went untreated, according to clinical trial data reported this week by British biotechnology firm GW Pharmaceuticals.

Twenty-one patients with recurrent glioblastoma multiforme and who were undergoing conventional anti-cancer treatment participated in the study. Patients received either a proprietary cannabis extract containing a combination of THC and CBD or a placebo.

“[P]atients with documented recurrent GBM treated with THC:CBD had an 83 percent one year survival rate compared with 53 percent for patients in the placebo cohort,” the company summarized in a press release. “Median survival for the THC:CBD group was greater than 550 days compared with 369 days in the placebo group.”

The study’s findings replicate preclinical data demonstrating that the adjunctive use of cannabinoids with temozolomide may be associated with greater anti-cancer activity than the use of conventional therapy alone.

Glioblastoma multiforme is an especially aggressive form of cancer, with only 28 percent of patients surviving one year and fewer than four percent surviving five years.

For more information on the potential anti-cancer activity of cannabinoids, please see: http://norml.org/library/item/gliomascancer.

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Thank you for visiting MDMMCC.com, the premier Medical Marijuana Certification Center in Maryland. Our Mission at the Maryland Medical Marijuana Certification Clinics (MDMMCC) is to provide the certification necessary for qualified patients to obtain Medical Marijuana in compliance with the Maryland Medical Marijuana Laws in the State of Maryland.  MDMMCC will have offices open throughout Maryland.

Clinical Trial: THCV Lowers Blood Sugar Levels In Type 2 Diabetics

DERBY, UK — The administration of THCV (tetrahydrocannabivarin), a non-psychoactive component of cannabis, is positively associated with glycemic control in type 2 diabetics, according to the randomized, placebo-controlled data published in the journal Diabetes Care.

Investigators from the University of Nottingham, School of Medicine assessed the twice daily administration of various cannabinoids (CBD or THCV or CBD and THCV in combination) versus placebo over a period of 13 weeks in 62 non-insulin dependent subjects with type 2 diabetes.

Authors reported that the administration of THCV alone “significantly decreased fasting plasma glucose” levels and improved pancreatic cell function. By contrast, other treatment therapies failed to show detectable metabolic effects.

Investigators concluded, “THCV could represent a new therapeutic agent in glycemic control in subjects with type 2 diabetes.”

Population-based observational studies have previously reported that cannabis consumers typically possess lower BMI and other favorable indices related to diabetic control compared to those without a history of marijuana use.

Full text of the study, “Efficacy and safety of cannabidiol and tetrahydrocannabivarin on glycemic and lipid parameters in patients with type 2 diabetes: A randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled parallel group pilot study,” appears in Diabetes Care.

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Thank you for visiting MDMMCC.com, the premier Medical Marijuana Certification Center in Maryland. Our Mission at the Maryland Medical Marijuana Certification Clinics (MDMMCC) is to provide the certification necessary for qualified patients to obtain Medical Marijuana in compliance with the Maryland Medical Marijuana Laws in the State of Maryland.  MDMMCC will have offices open throughout Maryland.

National Academy of Sciences Releases Report on Marijuana Confirming Medical Benefits; Dispelling Myths

WASHINGTON, DC — The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine released a report on the health impacts of marijuana Thursday, confirming the existence of medical benefits and dispelling some long-held myths about the substance.

The review of more than 10,000 scientific abstracts found, “There is conclusive or substantial evidence that cannabis or cannabinoids are effective” for the treatment of chronic pain in adults, chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting, and multiple sclerosis spasticity.

“These findings clearly undermine the federal government’s decision to classify marijuana under Schedule I, which is reserved for substances with no medical value,” said Mason Tvert, director of communications for the Marijuana Policy Project. “It confirms that marijuana has several medical benefits and is not nearly as problematic as people are often led to believe. There is no rational or scientific justification for our nation’s current marijuana prohibition policy.”

The report also dispels several myths about the health impacts of marijuana. It found no links between smoking marijuana and the development of lung, head, or neck cancers, nor did it establish a link between marijuana use and asthma or other respiratory diseases. The respiratory problems that it did link to smoking marijuana, such as bronchitis, appear to improve after the consumer ceases their use.

According to the report, “There is no or insufficient evidence” linking marijuana use to all-cause mortality (death), deaths from overdose, or occupational accidents or injuries. It also found no substantial evidence of a link between the use of marijuana and the use of other illegal drugs. The report also does not appear to make any links between marijuana use and violent or aggressive behavior. Several of these findings were also included in the National Academies of Sciences’ previous report on marijuana, which was released in 1999.

“The report essentially concludes that marijuana is not harmless, but it is not as harmful as many other products that are regulated for adult use,” Tvert said. “If the researchers conducted a similar study on alcohol, they would conclude that it poses far more harm and provides far fewer medical benefits than marijuana. Marijuana is objectively less harmful than alcohol, and that should be reflected in our nation’s laws.”

The entire report can be read here.

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Thank you for visiting MDMMCC.com, the premier Medical Marijuana Certification Center in Maryland. Our Mission at the Maryland Medical Marijuana Certification Clinics (MDMMCC) is to provide the certification necessary for qualified patients to obtain Medical Marijuana in compliance with the Maryland Medical Marijuana Laws in the State of Maryland.  MDMMCC will have offices open throughout Maryland.

NORML Responds to National Academy of Sciences’ Marijuana Report

WASHINGTON, DC — The National Academy of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine released a comprehensive report Thursday acknowledging that “conclusive or substantial evidence” exists for cannabis’ efficacy in patients suffering from chronic pain, and sharply criticized longstanding federal regulatory barriers to marijuana research – in particular “the classification of cannabis as a Schedule I substance” under federal law.

Authors of the report also addressed various aspects of marijuana’s effect on health and safety, acknowledging that the substance may pose certain potential risks for adolescents, pregnant women, and for those who may be driving shortly after ingesting cannabis. In each of these cases, these risks may be mitigated via marijuana regulation and the imposition of age restrictions in the marketplace.

Commenting on the report, NORML Deputy Director Paul Armentano said:

“The National Academy of Science’s conclusions that marijuana possesses established therapeutic utility for certain patients and that it possesses an acceptable safety profile when compared to those of other medications or recreational intoxicants are not surprising. This evidence has been available for some time, yet for decades marijuana policy in this country has largely been driven by rhetoric and emotion, not science and evidence.

“A search on PubMed, the repository for all peer-reviewed scientific papers, using the term ‘marijuana’ yields over 24,000 scientific papers referencing the plant or its biologically active constituents — a far greater body of literature than exists for commonly consumed conventional drugs like Tylenol, ibuprofen, or hydrocodone. Further, unlike modern pharmaceuticals, cannabis possesses an extensive history of human use dating back thousands of years, thus providing society with ample empirical evidence as to its relative safety and efficacy.

“Today, 29 states and Washington, DC permit physicians to recommend marijuana therapy. Some of these state-sanctioned programs have now been in place for nearly two decades. Eight states also permit the regulated use and sale of cannabis by adults. At a minimum, we know enough about cannabis, as well as the failures of cannabis prohibition, to regulate its consumption by adults, end its longstanding criminalization, and to remove it from its Schedule I prohibitive under federal law.”

The report marks the first time since 1999 that the National Academy of Sciences has addressed issues surrounding marijuana and health.

Authors reviewed over 10,000 scientific abstracts in their preparation of the new report.

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Thank you for visiting MDMMCC.com, the premier Medical Marijuana Certification Center in Maryland. Our Mission at the Maryland Medical Marijuana Certification Clinics (MDMMCC) is to provide the certification necessary for qualified patients to obtain Medical Marijuana in compliance with the Maryland Medical Marijuana Laws in the State of Maryland.  MDMMCC will have offices open throughout Maryland.

Study: History of Cannabis Use Not An Independent Risk Factor for Stroke

Study: History of Cannabis Use Not An Independent Risk Factor for Stroke | NORML

STOCKHOLM, SWEDEN — The use of cannabis is not an independent contributing factor to the risk of stroke in those under 60 years of age, according to population-based data published online ahead of print in the journal Stroke. An international team of investigators from Sweden and France assessed the relationship between marijuana use and stroke risk […]

Study: History of Cannabis Use Not An Independent Risk Factor for Stroke | The Daily Chronic


Thank you for visiting MDMMCC.com, the premier Medical Marijuana Certification Center in Maryland. Our Mission at the Maryland Medical Marijuana Certification Clinics (MDMMCC) is to provide the certification necessary for qualified patients to obtain Medical Marijuana in compliance with the Maryland Medical Marijuana Laws in the State of Maryland.  MDMMCC will have offices open throughout Maryland.

Study: History of Marijuana Use Helps Reduce In-Hospital Mortality

GREELEY, CO — Hospitalized patients who test positive for cannabis are less likely than non-users to suffer from heart failure or cardiac disease, and are less likely to die from cancer, according to data published online ahead of print in the journal Cancer Medicine.

A team of researchers from the University of Northern Colorado, Colorado State University, and the University of Alabama assessed the relationship between marijuana use and health outcomes among a nationwide sample of 3.9 million hospitalized patients.

Researchers reported that marijuana-positive patients were more likely than non-users to seek hospitalization for stroke, but that they possessed lower odds of heart failure or cardiac disease, and that they possessed increased survival rates overall – especially among those patients with cancer. Authors concluded, “Odds of in-hospital mortality were significantly reduced among marijuana users compared with non-users in all hospitalized patients as well as cancer patients.”

Separate data, presented in April at the 2016 meeting of the American College of Cardiology, reported that heart attack patients with a history of cannabis use are less likely than non-users to die during hospitalization. A 2014 UCLA study similarly reported greater survival rates in marijuana-positive patients hospitalized for Traumatic Brain Injury.

Full text of the study, “Marijuana use and inpatient outcomes among hospitalized patients: analysis of the nationwide inpatient sample database,” appears in Cancer Medicine.

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Thank you for visiting MDMMCC.com, the premier Medical Marijuana Certification Center in Maryland. Our Mission at the Maryland Medical Marijuana Certification Clinics (MDMMCC) is to provide the certification necessary for qualified patients to obtain Medical Marijuana in compliance with the Maryland Medical Marijuana Laws in the State of Maryland.  MDMMCC will have offices open throughout Maryland.

Marijuana Could Treat Sexual Dysfunctions, Study Suggests

WikiMedia Commons

A new study released last week suggests that medical marijuana could be used to treat sexual dysfunctions.

According to a study published in the journal Pharmacological Research and published online by the National Institute of Health, cannabis could lead to “a potential therapeutic target for sexual dysfunctions.”

The study’s abstract states that “for centuries, in addition to its recreational actions, several contradictory claims regarding the effects of Cannabis use in sexual functioning and behavior (e.g. aphrodisiac vs anti-aphrodisiac) of both sexes have been accumulated. The identification of Δ9-THC and later on, the discovery of the ECS have opened a potential therapeutic target for sexual dysfunctions, given the partial efficacy of current pharmacological treatment.”

“In agreement with the bidirectional modulation induced by cannabinoids on several behavioral responses, the endogenous cannabinoid AEA elicited biphasic effects on sexual behavior as well,” the study continues. “The present article reviews current available knowledge on herbal, synthetic and endogenous cannabinoids with respect to the modulation of several aspects of sexuality in preclinical and human studies, highlighting their therapeutic potential.”

An abstract of the study can be found here.

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Thank you for visiting MDMMCC.com, the premier Medical Marijuana Certification Center in Maryland. Our Mission at the Maryland Medical Marijuana Certification Clinics (MDMMCC) is to provide the certification necessary for qualified patients to obtain Medical Marijuana in compliance with the Maryland Medical Marijuana Laws in the State of Maryland.  MDMMCC will have offices open throughout Maryland.

Medical Marijuana Associated With Improved Cognitive Performance, Reduced Opioid Use

Medical Marijuana Associated With Improved Cognitive Performance, Reduced Opioid Use | Paul Armentano

Medical cannabis administration is associated with improved cognitive performance and lower levels of prescription drug use, according to longitudinal data published online in the journal Frontiers in Pharmacology. Investigators from Harvard Medical School, Tufts University, and McLean Hospital evaluated the use of medicinal cannabis on patients’ cognitive performance over a three-month period. Participants in the […]

Medical Marijuana Associated With Improved Cognitive Performance, Reduced Opioid Use | The Daily Chronic


Thank you for visiting MDMMCC.com, the premier Medical Marijuana Certification Center in Maryland. Our Mission at the Maryland Medical Marijuana Certification Clinics (MDMMCC) is to provide the certification necessary for qualified patients to obtain Medical Marijuana in compliance with the Maryland Medical Marijuana Laws in the State of Maryland.  MDMMCC will have offices open throughout Maryland.

Study: Medical Cannabis Use Associated With Improved Cognitive Performance, Reduced Use Of Opioids

Medical cannabis administration is associated with improved cognitive performance and lower levels of prescription drug use, according to longitudinal data published online in the journal Frontiers in Pharmacology.

Investigators from Harvard Medical School, Tufts University, and McLean Hospital evaluated the use of medicinal cannabis on patients’ cognitive performance over a three-month period. Participants in the study were either naïve to cannabis or had abstained from the substance over the previous decade. Baseline evaluations of patients’ cognitive performance were taken prior to their cannabis use and then again following treatment.

Researchers reported “no significant decrements in performance” following medical marijuana use. Rather, they determined, “[P]atients experienced some improvement on measures of executive functioning, including the Stroop Color Word Test and Trail Making Test, mostly reflected as increased speed in completing tasks without a loss of accuracy.”

Participants in the study were less likely to experience feelings of depression during treatment, and many significantly reduced their use of prescription drugs.

“[D]ata revealed a notable decrease in weekly use across all medication classes, including reductions in use of opiates (-42.88 percent), antidepressants (-17.64 percent), mood stabilizers (-33.33 percent), and benzodiazepines (-38.89 percent),” authors reported – a finding that is consistent with prior studies.

Patients in the study will continue to be assessed over the course of one-year of treatment to assess whether these preliminary trends persist long-term.

Full text of the study, “Splendor in the grass? A pilot study assessing the impact of marijuana on executive function,” appears online here.

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Thank you for visiting MDMMCC.com, the premier Medical Marijuana Certification Center in Maryland. Our Mission at the Maryland Medical Marijuana Certification Clinics (MDMMCC) is to provide the certification necessary for qualified patients to obtain Medical Marijuana in compliance with the Maryland Medical Marijuana Laws in the State of Maryland.  MDMMCC will have offices open throughout Maryland.