Medical Cannabis Blog
The cannabis industry is new, but quickly evolving. The rapid pace of change is aggravated by the complexity of the plant itself, the complexity of its supply chain, the complexity of products offered, the complexity of rules and regulations for legal cannabis, and the complexity of legal market suppliers having to compete with a thriving black market.
Many of the problems the industry is currently facing will be resolved over time as the market matures. Yet, these problems are still quite relevant to current cannabis users, especially those seeking medical relief. This post enumerates some of the more significant problems that users should be aware of regarding cannabis product testing, labeling, dosing, and variety.
The cannabis community is increasingly recognizing the tremendous benefits gained by combining CBD with THC and other cannabis compounds in cannabis products. What’s less recognized than the entourage effect, but nonetheless gaining traction, is the importance of combining CBD with THC in fixed proportions, or ratios. That is, researchers are finding that specific CBD-to-THC ratios may be more effective for treating specific medical conditions. For example, products with high CBD-to-THC ratios — that is, products with 20 or 25 parts CBD to 1 part THC — benefit patients with anxiety, epilepsy, and depression. Alternatively, products with equal parts CBD and THC, 1-to-1 ratios, may be more effective at treating nausea and certain types of cancer.
There are many different methods used to process cannabis and obtain its active ingredients. As far as cannabis users are concerned, the primary difference between the various processes is: which components from the original plant remain in the final extract? Is it a single cannabinoid, a combination of cannabinoids and terpenes, or a combination of many different compounds found in the original plant? Cannabis cultivators and manufacturers also care about the yield and purity of the final extract: how many milligrams of cannabinoids are generated from the original plant, and is there any residual plant matter left in the extract?
My brother has multiple sclerosis (MS). MS is a degenerative disease affecting the brain and spinal cord; it generally causes problems with vision, balance, and muscle control. My brother’s body was deteriorating, but none of the medications his doctors recommended seemed to help. While researching the disease on his own, however, he discovered that stem cell transplants have been successfully used to halt the progression of the disease. He was unable to undergo the procedure in the US; he eventually had it performed in Mexico. It’s been 1,193 days since my brother’s stem cell transplant, and so far, the disease has not progressed (my brother has documented his journey here).
What are e-cigarettes?
Electronic cigarettes, or e-cigarettes, are all the rage. Since their introduction in 2003, e-cigarette use (vaping) has mushroomed: as of 2018, more than 10 million people globally vape.
Wikipedia describes an e-cigarette as follows:
An electronic cigarette or e-cigarette is a handheld battery-powered vaporizer that simulates smoking … but without burning tobacco. Using an e-cigarette is known as "vaping" and the user is referred to as a "vaper." Instead of cigarette smoke, the user inhales an aerosol, commonly called vapor.
Emerald Health, a Canadian cannabis pharmaceutical company, is developing what could be a “holy grail” treatment for sufferers of Multiple Sclerosis (MS).
Myelin is a sheath around nerve cells – a layer of protective insulation – that helps nerves smoothly conduct signals. MS causes this sheath to degrade. This demyelination prevents nerves from smoothly conducting impulses, causing pain and other serious problems for sufferers of Multiple Sclerosis (MS) and other demyelinating diseases or injuries.
Miscellaneous Information about Cannabis and Sleep
Low-doses of CBD have a stimulating effect, while high-doses of CBD have a sedating effect. So if you use CBD for sleep, make sure you take a high enough dose.
Sleep problems are often multifaceted. The best solution — THC, CBD, or both — depends on the cause of your problem.
Cannabis and Sleep Cycles
During the course of an eight-hour sleep period, a healthy sleeper should cycle through the different sleep stages every 90 minutes or so:
Outstanding podcast on cannabis in nursing homes from The Brave New Weed: https://www.bravenewweed.com/all-episodes/ep54
The relevant discussion starts at about 22:20. Issues discussed include:
- The pioneering use of cannabis in nursing homes in Israel, with a clinic just now opening in Beverly Hills.
- The use of THC in micro doses — less than 1 mg (“standard” doses are about 10 mg)
- The majority of patients do not experience any psychoactive effects
- Cannabis is effective for about 95% of patients
- The majority of patients experience positive results in addressing