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Pharmacy & Pharmacology International Journal

Editorial Volume 3 Issue 3

High stakes considerations with medical marijuana

Jack E Fincham

Department of Pharmaceutical and Administrative Sciences, Presbyterian College School of Pharmacy, USA

Correspondence: Jack E Fincham, Department of Pharmaceutical and Administrative Sciences, Presbyterian College School of Pharmacy, 307 North Broad Street, Clinton, South Carolina 29325, USA, Tel 8649383835

Received: January 12, 2016 | Published: January 22, 2016

Citation: Fincham JE. High stakes considerations with medical marijuana. Pharm Pharmacol Int J. 2016;3(3):293. DOI: 10.15406/ppij.2015.03.00058

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There is much to follow now and in the future with certainty concerning the ever increasing use, legalization, and ramifications of the use of medical marijuana in the United States and elsewhere globally. The negative, potential impact upon patients and health care might very well resemble the catastrophic period in the late 19th and early 20thcenturies in the US as a result of the patent medicine debacle present at that time. Many products, if not all, were claimed to have curative and unbelievably precise impact son virtually every organ system in the body. The situation was not ameliorated until the enactment of the U.S. 1906 Pure Food and Drugs Act1 and subsequent Acts past decades later. In a 40year cohort study Calagan et al.,2 found that heavy cannabis use led to an over two fold increase in the occurrence of lung cancer.

According to the National Conference of State Legislatures, as of Medical Marijuana Dispensaries (MMD) are now legal in 23 jurisdictions (22 states and the District of Columbia).3 In fairness to possible positive benefits of the use of medical marijuana, there are published papers detailing relief of pain and many other potentialities including treatment for glaucoma, HIV, etc.4 G W Pharmaceuticals does have cannabinoid derivatives (Sativex® and Epidolex®) marketed and approved for use in the UK, Spain, Canada, and New Zealand to treat spacity due to multiples chlerosis. Despite this availability of a prescription form of marijuana, under law in England and Wales, cannabis is not recognised as having any therapeutic use.5 Recently, in a review of cannabis and derivatives with applicability to Canada, Leung notes that marijuana use is under-reported. Leung further suggests that cannabis is often used for chronic and neuropathic pain, and that the potential for adverse effects and addiction is a probability with its use.6 In a systemic review of use of medical marijuana in neurologic disorders, Koppel et al.,7 found adverse psychopathological effects due to use to be nearly 1%. They conclude that comparative effectiveness of medical marijuana with approved agents for use in neurologic disorders in simply unknown. Thompson8 points to evidence implying marijuana may be an effective treatment for chronic pain, neuropathic pain, and multiple sclerotic and/or paraplegic pains.8

The requirements for knowledge and skills relevant to the use of medical marijuana are simply not present to the extent necessary and demanded for those that currently obtain licenses or approval to write prescriptions or dispense prescriptions for medical marijuana in the U.S. Currently, in the U.S. one simply has to obtain a license for the most part to sell medical marijuana in a retail setting.

There is little doubt that the number of approving U.S. states will also continue to grow. This can have positive potential out comes for many suffering at present with inadequate treatment regimens or accessibility. Dosing of marijuana is complex and is dependent upon the patient and the form used for ingestion.

Things to consider

What does this mean for many in our society: patients, health practitioners, and health professional education entities? How should health professions proceed with plans and reactions to this? How, when, or if should material relevant to medical marijuana be taught in health science curricular

The answers are not applicable to only one profession, are cent Anna GJ9 pointed to the impact upon physicians trying to assist patients. The concluding statement urged the dilemma to be considered a public health issue rather than a legal quandary. Whether this will change soon is debatable. What are needed are intra professional dialogues, discussions, and ramification consideration snow.

It is the view of this author that it is not prudent to wait many years or Decades for this to bead dressed, this was the delay period regarding patent medicines in the U.S. a century ago, and the consequences cannot be duplicated. Patient lives and other ramifications suggest action now for many positive reasons regarding any and all aspects of medical marijuana.



Conflict of interest

Author declares that there is no conflict of interest.


Creative Commons Attribution License

©2016 Fincham. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and build upon your work non-commercially.