Interesting article on marijuana

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by JaciBart, Apr 8, 2003.

  1. JaciBart

    JaciBart Member

    'Cannabis is not good for your mental health'

    April 07 2003 at 10:54AM



    The rise in the use of cannabis in Britain is storing up a significant mental health problem for the future, a British health expert said on Monday, predicting rises in schizophrenia and depression.

    Noting that the number of tobacco smokers was at around 13 million and declining while cannabis use was at 3,2 million and rising, experts are warning against relaxing attitudes towards the drug.

    The physical effects of cannabis smoking were much the same as those of cigarettes, with illnesses like heart disease and cancer the likely consequences, toxicologist John Henry told the BBC.

    Henry, a professor at the prestigious Imperial College in London, said cannabis use could cause a four-fold increase in schizophrenia and depression.

    'Regular cannabis smokers develop mental illness'

    "Regular cannabis smokers develop mental illness. There's a four-fold increase in schizophrenia and there's a four-fold increase in major depression and that is something very, very different to what cigarettes do to you," Henry told the public broadcaster ahead of an address to the Royal Society of Medicine on Monday.

    Henry notes that schizophrenia costs Britain's state-run National Health Service around one billion pounds (about R12,5-billion) a year, equivalent to three percent of the NHS budget.

    He says he is also shocked at the physical damage to lungs caused by the deep inhaling that usually goes with cannabis use.

    Britain has announced plans to downgrade cannabis from a Class B to a Class C drug, reducing the penalties for being caught in possession, after advice that it was much less damaging than other drugs.

    Experts note that modern cannabis, often home-grown under lights in Britain, is considerably stronger than the drug smoked 30 years ago.

    *******************************************************

    Scares the heck out of me for many reasons.

    Jaci





  2. Fibromiester

    Fibromiester New Member

    But this is Shock Jock Journalism!

    First, it states "...the physical effects...same as...cigarettes..."

    Well, since both are inhaled, yes, both are {destructive}-My word. So, what's new?
    also...

    "...shocked at the physical damage to lungs caused by the deep inhaling that usually goes with cannabis use"
    {{what descriptive words!!}}

    OK, What cadavar was disected?
    A woman aged 58yr who had FM/CMP for 25 yrs and had used mj for 5 yrs,a few puffs twice a day for pain? Hmmm.
    Or a Junkie who used it to get high or stay high, 2-3 times a day, a whole joint at a time, for 5 yrs...?
    Whose lungs had this Dr. seen?? Hmmm.

    "...regular cannabis smokers develop mental illness"...
    and
    "...cannabis use...increasing...4-fold...Schizophrenia and Depression..."

    IMHO. Regular Alcohol Drinkers develop mental illness. And this includes Schizophrenia and Deep Depression, as well. And if you don't believe my humble opinion, take a ride down to the local Half-way House in your area. And you have heard of scads of movie stars who hit rock "bottom" because they were alcoholics.

    I'm saying if one wants to get High to Escape reality- via pot or other drugs, alcohol, then one will. *Which comes first*, the Chicken or the Egg? The Illness then the Drug of Choice?
    This article was about the MISUSE of MJ.

    This article does Not say if I were to smoke a few drags in the AM & PM, or Whatever, that I would become a stark raving MAD IDIOT, OK?

    The article also includes a statement about "...reducing the penaties for being caught in possession..." of the drug. The main reason for the research it sites, was to STOP the push to reduce penalties of Possession, and to Continue the fines, penalties etc. because STREET USE was on the INCREASE at an alarming rate!!! This has nothing to do with US, You & I and our Aches & Pains and our own individual decision to smoke or not to smoke!
    Oh, I love it here- I'm on my soap box, and I have no idea as to What I'm writing about!! LOL

    Thanks for being there for me

    Fibromiester :)

  3. Mikie

    Mikie Moderator

    Prolonged use of alcohol will cause brain damage, and I'll bet that alcohol is responsible for a lot more damage and financial loss than MJ.

    There are some MJ derivative drugs being pursued and tested. These are in capsule form and don't make the patient high, but they are supposed to have the other benefits of MJ.

    Love, Mikie
  4. Notonline

    Notonline New Member

    but I would like to know what factors this study based it's findings on.

    Like...was family heredity/history also taken into account?

    How many of these pot smokers had also dabbled in more potent drugs over the years ...like cocaine (very common) that could've contributed to the cause of the schizophrenia?

    Enviromental factors? Childhood abuse?

    Most users of drug or liquor are looking for a relief for existing current problems (pain, anxiety, depression), or and aid in copping with life...the reason that they start using in the first place.

    I used to dabble a bit in high school, as did many of my friends. I can name an existing problem each and every one of us was trying to find relief from before we even started smoking pot back then. Depression was a big one, but it was definately a "pre-existing" condition.
  5. Copper2002

    Copper2002 New Member

    Everyone's got a 'write' to their own opinions, right? I see this article as nothing more than that- an article. OK writing style and all that, but I see the content as only an opinion, not any facts as none were referenced.

    Last night one of my local PBS stations ran a program re: CA mj laws vs Fed mj laws. I only watched it on commercials from Dr. Phil's (great topic last nite!), but caught info about a patch that will HOPEFULLY be approved before too long. The following is what I got from their website:

    >>Cannabis medication in the form of an adhesive device comparable to the established nicotine patch has been developed, and is described in two United States Patents, numbers 6,328,992 and 6,113,940 ( "Cannabinoid patch and method for cannabis transdermal delivery"). Foreign patent coverage is established.

    The inventors are Dr. Cal Herrmann, Lawrence Brooke, and Dr. Su Il Yum. The patents have been assigned to Patchtek Inc., a Nevada Corporation exclusively involved in creating a relationship with one or more established medical manufacturers.

    This new medical technology was described at a recent conference, by Dr. Herrmann, and the text of his talk is attached here: "A Step Towards Medical Recognition: the Cannabinoid Patch

    Cal Herrmann, ScD
    General Hydroponics Europe and General Hydroponics USA
    3 March 2001
    _________________________________________________

    Medications are heavily regulated in the United States.
    A hundred years ago, products were sold with claims for which there were no demonstrable bases, and doctors had very little access to testing information about the products. Later, nationwide laws were established, but laws can be influenced by public fears, or by economic competition.

    In the US there remains active political competition between the federal authority and "States' Rights." The original states were effectively independent countries after our revolution, until they became federated by the compromises of our Constitution.

    Recently in California, State's Rights have been claimed for medical necessity, in the popular vote for "Proposition 215," which allows physicians to prescribe marijuana products where needed. This conflicts with Federal law, and is an important issue to be decided by the Supreme Court of the United States.

    A most complete critical review of the issues involved in medical recognition is the National Academy of Sciences, Institute of Medicine, study:

    "Marijuana and Medicine" (1999, ISBN 0-309-07155-0)

    The introduction states, on page viii:

    " Advances in cannabinoid science over the past 16 years have given rise to a wealth of new opportunities for the development of medically useful cannabinoid-based drugs. The accumulated data suggest a variety of indications, particularly for pain relief, antiemesis, and appetite stimulation. For patients who suffer simultaneously from severe pain, nausea, and appetite loss, such as those with AIDS or who are undergoing chemotherapy, cannabinoid drugs might offer broad-spectrum relief not found in any other single medication."

    Issues to be Solved
    In California, Lawrence Brooke and I were concerned that proper medication was not available to many, including elderly persons we knew who were suffering from untreated pain. We felt that the support given by medical specialists and the public to Proposition 215, as well as the technical information found in the National Academy of Sciences study, demonstrated both the need for and the healing potential of marijuana materials.

    The NAS study criticized the known methods of administering cannabinoid advantages from marijuana. Although smoking is a simple, tested method of delivery, it presents serious problems for medical use: it is impossible for a doctor to prescribe an accurate dosage appropriate to the patient's condition; and, for some, smoking is unpleasant, it may be irritating to already damaged tissues, or it may be difficult for those physically impaired.

    The NAS report mentions the possibility of an inhaler device such as is used for some other medications, for instance, against allergies and asthma. We felt this method also does not solve the problems of accurate dosage and physical handling for the patient.

    We had been impressed by the success of the nicotine patch in aiding tobacco smokers to escape partially from their addiction, and felt that the cannabinoid oils extractable from the marijuana buds might well be offered to the body in a patch format. We felt this particularly appropriate when we learned of chemical analyses showing the presence of active ingredients, reproducibly, of over 25 per cent in this oil. The concentration and absorption rate of a patch oil can be assured to the prescribing physician, responding to the serious criticism of the Health Council of the Netherlands:

    " The committee believes that physicians cannot accept responsibility for a product of unknown composition that has not been subjected to quality control."

    Therefore, we took on the task of designing an adhesive patch, with a reservoir and adsorbant for the cannabinoid extract, aided by carriers to permit migration of the medication through the skin barrier. We examined the technical literature for previously studied good ideas, and were satisfied with our positive reports from test subjects.

    The patent as a route to acceptance
    We were advised by our specialist in patent law that our approach was sufficiently innovative that a patent description and claims should be registered. This route also amounts to a public declaration that medical help is possible and is on the way.

    It was only after the patent number 6113940 was granted that we realized that the granting is also a partial recognition by our government of the medical value of this invention. Much of the Federal government's opposition to doctors' recommendations stems from its formal claim that there is no medical value in such a product. This is a principal issue of a "Schedule I" definition, which can only be changed by the following steps, as quoted in the NAS report:

    " The substance's chemistry must be scientifically established to permit it to be reproduced in dosages which can be standardized."

    The patch makes dosage controllable and reproducible.

    " There must be adequate pharmacological and toxicological studies done by all methods reasonably applicable on the basis of which it could be fairly and responsibly concluded, by experts qualified by scientific training and experience to evaluate the safety and effectiveness of drugs, that the substance is safe for treating a specific, recognized disorder."

    The patch provides a means for testing, both for safety and for applicability to several disorders.

    " There must be adequate, well-controlled, well-designed, well-conducted, and well-documented studies, including clinical investigations, by experts qualified by scientific training and experience to evaluate the safety and effectiveness of drugs on the basis of which it could fairly and responsibly be concluded by such experts that the substance will have its intended effect in treating a specific, recognized disorder."

    Without some means for use by qualified physicians and their patients, these requirements cannot be satisfied!

    " The drug must have a New Drug Application (NDA), approved by the Food and Drug Administration .... "

    " In the absence of NDA approval, information concerning the chemistry, pharmacology, toxicology, and effectiveness of the substance must be reported, published, or otherwise widely available in sufficient detail to permit experts, qualified by scientific training and experience, to evaluate the safety and effectiveness of drugs, to fairly and responsibly conclude the substance is safe and effective for use in treating a specific, recognized disorder."

    Our understanding is that there is much recorded success from informal use of marijuana cannabinoids in medicine, over the years, centuries, even longer.

    Much historical medical information can be found at:

    www.farmacy.org

    Practical Development
    Lawrence Brooke and I are inventors of this patch patent, but we are not pharmaceutical manufacturers. So we plan to work with an experienced patch manufacturer to make the cannabinoid patch available.

    As hydroponic enthusiasts, we feel confident that hydroponic growth of this and of other plant-based medicines will provide the reliable, active products required by doctors and the public.

    Aqueous hydroponic media can easily be controlled to provide optimum mineral and organic nutrition which the many species and varieties of medicinal plants require.

    Implications
    Medical acceptance of this treatment for severely distressed patients has no effect on the status of recreational use of marijuana or marijuana derivatives.

    It does make possible a scientific study of the effects as found in these patients.

    In order to respond to the fundamental question: is marijuana more dangerous than the currently legally tolerated alcohol, tobacco, caffeine, etc., medical evidence from a few thousand patients can finally yield plausible results based on observations and experience rather than bias. As a scientist, I value the answer to the basic question concerning the level of danger, whatever the result.

    Summary
    The cannabinoid patch can be a medically effective treatment for serious ailments. It offers a form that permits accurate prescription dosages.

    Acceptance by the United States Patent Office is a first step toward medical acceptance as prescribed in the National Academy of Sciences study and report.

    Further development to a manufactured medication must involve the established pharmaceutical industry.

    Hydroponically grown medicinal plants can provide predictable, reliable, dosage forms."<<

    pax,
    Copper
    Let Miracles Replace ALL Grievances
  6. Notonline

    Notonline New Member

    Patch me up!!

    Brings to mind that infamous Simpson's episode, where Krusty the clown is trying to give up smoking and is covered in nicotine patches....
  7. Mikie

    Mikie Moderator

    Morphine got me through some rough times until the Guai, physical therapy, and Klonopin kicked in.

    There are drugs in all classifications: Herbal extracts sold in supplement form, prescription drugs extracted from plants, and synthetic drugs. Each carries benefits and each carries risks. I always find it amusing when people talk about wanting to handle things "naturally" by using only herbal extract supplements. It is just as important when using these to know how they work and how they interact with other herbals and with prescription meds.

    I use the "common sense" approach. I take my prescriptions, which are helping me greatly, and I take my supplements, which are also helping me greatly. Of course, being on the Guai has meant that I have had to give up any supplements made from herbal extractions.

    It makes no sense to outlaw a plant which can be of great benefit medicinally just because some people have abused it. People abuse all kinds of substances. Again, alcohol is one of the most abused substances and it is legal.

    Love, Mikie