When it comes to healing ailments and enhancing wellness, medical cannabis medicines are becoming increasingly popular. This is in stark contrast with the traditional clinical methods of treating medical conditions, such as those used by conventional doctors and medical specialists. These medical practitioners often recommend drugs based on research and experimentation that may not have any beneficial effects for the vast majority of patients. This often leaves patients dissatisfied and in search of alternative therapies and remedies. However, when one considers cannabis medicines as a treatment option, they too, feel fairly disappointed with what they find.
One of the more common forms of medicinal cannabis that many people seem to enjoy is cannabis oil. cannabis oil, whether obtained from fresh cannabis buds or cannabis plants grown using the more traditional herbicides, can be used to help with a number of medical conditions, including relieving the symptoms of nausea and vomiting, as well as aiding with the treatment of spasticity and chronic constipation. The reason why it has been found to be particularly effective at combating nausea and vomiting is due to the fact that it contains the chemical CBD, which has been proven to combat nausea by suppressing the signals sent to the brain that allow you to feel nauseated. It is also believed that the cannabis plant contains a chemical called THCA, which seems to be the cause of the “high” feeling that cannabis users feel when indulging in the substance; this “high” is thought to be due to the fact that THC has the ability to cross the blood-brain barrier and bind to the neurons of the brain, which leads to the feeling of “high”.
In many cannabis medicines, CBD and THCA are combined in order to produce higher concentrations of the substances needed to suppress the symptoms of illness. For example, one of these preparations may contain a blend of e.g. CBD, thyme (which has a high amount of thc and is thus able to reduce inflammation), and cannabidiol (which have a low amount of toxicity). This particular combination is known as a CBD/THC balancer. The highest quality of these products will contain all three compounds, CBD being the lowest, and the highest quality CBD products being the highest in CBD concentration and quantity.
As previously mentioned, cannabis medicines have recently been subject to significant clinical trials. In the U.S., there has been an extensive amount of clinical research conducted on two specific pharmaceutical cannabis medicines – Hops extract (cannabis sativa) and Bitter Orange (also cannabis sativa), both of which have shown promise for treating a range of ailments. However, the two medicines were introduced into the market quite recently, and their long-term effects are not yet known. So far, medical trials on these two drugs have only focused on the symptoms of patients diagnosed with chronic debilitating illnesses such as cancer or Alzheimer’s disease and have neither examined nor discussed the potential medical benefits associated with recreational use of cannabis. Although this is good news, the lack of research into the medical properties of cannabis means that we are only beginning to understand how these drugs work on the body.
Another area currently under research is the safety and efficacy of using cannabis medicines with a CBD component. While the majority of medical cannabis users do not need to consume cannabis with a CBD component, many others do and there is some evidence that CBD may reduce the side effects of other medicinal cannabis products. It is for this reason that clinical trials have been launched to determine whether CBD can improve the efficacy of existing treatments. If successful, this may herald exciting advances in the field of CBD-based medical products. If these trials indicate that CBD can be safely used to treat debilitating medical conditions, it may pave the way for fewer, more aggressive complementary therapies in the future.
There are a number of reasons why pharmaceutical companies are turning their research efforts to investigate CBD. One of these is the growing interest amongst physicians to medically treat patients who suffer from a range of debilitating diseases including Alzheimer’s and cancer. Although medical research in this area is still in its very early stages, there is a growing consensus among professionals that it is worth investing time and resources into. In addition, if cannabis medicines with a CBD component are found to be effective, it may provide a cure for a range of ailments that have confounded modern medicine. Investing in the development of new substances such as this is therefore not only a way of obtaining a reliable source of pharmaceutical profit, but also an opportunity to contribute towards the betterment of society as a whole.
The process of conducting clinical trials on cannabis medicines will differ depending on the product being tested. In general most clinical trials will follow the protocol set out by the US FDA. The important thing to remember, however, is that the final decision on whether or not a substance is approved for use in a medical application will rest ultimately with the FDA, not any independent organisation. For this reason, it is important for potential cannabis medicines users to become well informed about the procedures and ethics of any clinical trial before they make a decision to use them. This includes the background of the company, which is conducting the trial, the data which will be collected and the potential risks involved. By educating yourself, you can ensure that you have chosen a company that has a good track record of conducting clinical trials which have been carefully designed and monitored by trained clinical research personnel.
Although the precise nature of the cannabis medicines which will be tested remains subject to discussion, the main focus of any new drugs is to improve the patient’s quality of life. Therefore, the primary consideration will be the dosing schedule, as this will determine when the drug is taken orally. No matter how the drug is administered, the primary aim is to alleviate the symptoms of a patient suffering from a certain condition or disease. Dosing schedules are governed by two major sets of stakeholders – healthcare experts and ethics committees. Both of these groups have a major role in deciding which type of cannabis medicines will be approved for use.