6 Diseases Medical Marijuana Is Used To Treat in Pennsylvania

6 Diseases Approved for Medical Marijuana in Pennsylvania

note: The Sanctuary Wellness Institute does not sell any marijuana products or CBD products

1. Epilepsy

Epilepsy is a disease where nerve cell activity in the brain is disturbed causing uncontrollable twitches in the legs or arms, more commonly known as seizures. Reports show that people with Epilepsy have claimed medical marijuana has helped to relieve symptoms of their epilepsy (4).

In the brain, there is a signaling system where small molecules called ligands to bind to cannabinoid receptors serving as messengers. Ligands enable cells to control the strength of input between nerve cells (5). Researchers from a study published in the Journal of Epilepsy Research 2017 suggest that CBD has anticonvulsant (anti-siezure) effects. CBD is thought to enhance the control input between nerve cells which may help to prevent or decrease the severity of seizures (6).

2. Gastrointestinal Disorders

Irritable Bowel Syndrome, Crohn’s’s Disease and colitis all fall under the classification of gastrointestinal disorders. Symptoms of these conditions include abdominal pain, cramping, inflammation of the lining of the large and/or small intestine, diarrhea, and weight loss.

Research has demonstrated that activating the CB1 and CB2 cannabinoid receptors can help improve the health of the gastrointestinal tract. The gut is abudant in endocannabinoid receptors, and so exogenous cannabinoids can help stimulate these receptors, causing a suppression in gastrointestinal motility, decreasing overstimulated bowels and aiding in healing epithelial tissue. Cannabinoids can also help to decrease inflammation, which plays a key role in the progression of gastrointestinal conditions (7).

3. Parkinson Disease

Parkinson’s Disease is a degenerative disorder of the central nervous system, resulting in slowed movements, tremors and muscle rigidity. Some conventional medicines are available to treat the symptoms of Parkinson’s. But for now, there is no cure.

Within areas of the brain responsible for motor function, cannabinoid and dopamine systems regulate motor function by modulating the transmission between brain cells.

The consumption of medical marijuana has been reported to improve overall symptoms of Parkinson’s disease, such as reducing pain, tremors, and stiffness (8). Although the research looking at marijuana and Parkinson’s disease is still in its preliminary stages, it is currently hypothesized that cannabinoids can help by improving the transmission between nerve cells, alleviating symptoms of the disease (9). The ability of cannabinoids to decrease pain and inflammation (particularly CBD) could also help to improve symptoms.

4. Multiple Sclerosis

Multiple sclerosis is a degenerative disease of the central nervous system. Patients suffering from multiple sclerosis experience inflammation, a loss of coordination and weakness in the muscles. As the disease progresses, patients can become permanently disabled and in a small number of cases, they can die directly from this disease.

Research on medical marijuana concluded that, “smoked cannabis was superior to placebo in reducing spasticity and pain in patients with multiple sclerosis and provide some benefit beyond currently prescribed treatment” (10). A survey indicated nearly one in two multiple sclerosis patients use medical marijuana therapeutically (11). Activating cannabinoid receptors may also be neuroprotective (12). Although more research needs to be done, the plethora of successful anecdotal reports speak for themselves.

5. Cancer/Gliomas

Gliomas are very aggressive brain tumors. Gliomas typically terminal and cause death within one or two years following diagnosis. With no reliable cure and treatments options, providing symptomatic relief tends to be the only viable course of action.

Researchers from Madrid’s Complutense University were the first to report delta-9-THC induced the death of glioma cells in culture (13). Further investigations reported that the administration of both THC and a synthetic cannabinoid agonist WIN 55,212-2 induced significant regression of malignant gliomas (14). Other studies verified that cannabidiol (CBD) inhibits the growth of glioma cells lines in a dose-dependent manner (15).

6. Alzheimer’s Disease

Alzheimer’s Disease is a degenerative neurological disorder resulting in the progressive loss of learned behaviors and memory. There are no proven treatments or medications available to treat symptoms currently. Patients are likely to experience agitation, appetite loss, and depression amongst the primary symptoms of cognitive degeneration.

Preclinical studies have demonstrated the ability of cannabinoids to prevent neuronal cell death (16). Investigators who have written in the British Journal of Pharmacology concluded that cannabinoids help via neuroprotection and reducing neuroinflammation. Cannabinoids also may help Alzheimer’s patients by supporting the brain’s internal repair mechanisms which upregulate neurogenesis – the growth of new brain cells (17).

Summary

Medical marijuana seems to be both effective and safe for treating a range of diseases. Although this research is still in its infancy, medical marijuana seems to be a promising and viable alternative to conventional medication for some conditions.

The Sanctuary Wellness Institute medical marijuana cards evaluations at 5 locations in Pennsylvania – Philadelphia, Newtown Bucks County, Chester Springs, Lancaster and Camp Hill, PA

Medical Marijuana Approved for Anxiety Disorder in Pennsylvania

Medical Marijuana Approved for Anxiety Disorder in Pennsylvania

note: The Sanctuary Wellness Institute does not sell any marijuana products or CBD products

The Sanctuary Wellness Institute medical marijuana cards evaluations at 5 locations in Pennsylvania – Philadelphia, Newtown Bucks County, Chester Springs, Lancaster and Camp Hill, PA

The Pennsylvania Department of Health added anxiety disorders to its list of approved medical conditions for the state’s medical marijuana program. This change went in to effect as of July 20th 2019 and has been well received by patients in Pennsylvania.

Medical Marijuana Card Doctor Evaluations are available at the Sanctuary Wellness Institute. Our doctor will evaluate your condition and is authorized to issue your card. We have offices in Philadelphia, Newtown, Chester Springs, Lancaster and Camp Hill.

Call (484) 346-5140 to schedule.

Medical Marijuana and Anxiety

Medical marijuana is used in the treatment of a wide array of diseases such as chronic pain, cancer, arthritis, depression, diabetes, glaucoma, migraines, epilepsy, Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, etc.

Alongside legalization, comes increased research surrounding medical marijuana’s efficacy as a medicine. More and more people are turning to medical marijuana in hopes of relieving or managing anxiety. Research in this area is still sparse, although there are some anecdotal and scientific reports of medical marijuana relieving symptoms of anxiety and stress.

The global medical marijuana market is expected to reach a value of US$44.4 billion by 2024, with a predicted growth of 22.9 percent between 2019-2024 (1). Twenty-six countries and thirty-six states in the USA have now legalized medical marijuana; these numbers will only continue to rise.

What Is Anxiety?

There are different forms of anxiety disorders. These include social, phobic, obsessive-compulsive disorder, generalized anxiety disorder or post-traumatic stress disorder.

Diagnostic criteria and symptoms for each anxiety disorder differ. The WHO’s International Classification of Diseases note symptoms of:

  • Apprehensive thoughts, worrying about the future, difficulty concentrating and feeling on edge.
  • Motor tension, trembling, inability to relax, tension headaches, and restless fidgeting.
  • Autonomic overactivity, lightheadedness, tachypnoea or tachycardia, sweating, dizziness, dry mouth.

The prevalence of anxiety disorders globally ranges from 2.5 to 7 percent by country. There is estimated to be about 284 million people globally who experienced an anxiety disorder (2).

Typical Treatment for Anxiety Disorders

Treatment for anxiety disorders depends on the form and individual preferences, but it is usually treated with medication and therapy.

Doctors typically recommend stress management techniques. Stress management is achieved by organizing timetables, relaxation techniques like yoga, exercise, meditation, breathing techniques and writing down positive and negative thoughts. Counseling is also offered with trained mental health professionals.

Medications can help control the mental and physical symptoms of anxiety. Although most come with nasty side effects such as weight gain, drowsiness, nausea, sexual dysfunction and can be addictive. Cessation of some medications can also cause withdrawal symptoms.

The Endocannabinoid System And Anxiety

The modulation of the endocannabinoid system through the ingestion of medical marijuana influences a range of functions in the body, including those associated with anxiety.

Endocannabinoids are lipids produced naturally by the body and act as a neurotransmitter. These lipids activate CB1 and CB2 receptors in areas of the brain known to affect behavioral and emotional reactions, learning, memory, homeostasis and decision making.

Researchers have previously examined the role of CB1 receptors and discovered they play a key role in anxiety. They found deficiencies in natural cannabinoids result in an increased risk for the development of post-traumatic stress syndrome and depression. Supplementing this signaling system with low-doses of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) – one of the active compounds in medical marijuana – helped to reduced symptoms of anxiety and increase patients resilience to stress (3).

Evidence For Medical Marijuana Relieving Anxiety

The interactions between the endocannabinoids system and anxiety disorders are not fully understood. More research is needed into whether medical marijuana is a suitable treatment for anxiety disorders.

During a recent study of 72 adults at a large mental health clinic in Colorado, researchers administered 25mg of the non-psychoactive cannabinoid CBD in the participants. The researchers found that 79.2 percent of the participants reported improvements in their symptoms of stress and anxiety (4).

Post-traumatic stress disorder is a psychiatric response to traumatic events. Evidence is mounting that cannabinoids might play a role in helping to decrease fear in people with this anxiety disorder, as well as have antidepressant effects (5). Some studies have reported a greater than 75 percent reduction of symptom scores following medical marijuana therapy (6).

Best Marijuana Strains For Anxiety

To properly treat anxiety, it’s important to use a medical marijuana strain with an appropriate ratio of CBD to THC. Although cannabis can decrease anxiety, in some people, excess THC consumption can exacerbate it due to the psychoactive effects of the plant.

THC is the compound which gives the psychoactive effect cannabis is most well known for. Consumed alone or in a higher ratio to CBD, THC can trigger the area of the brain called the amygdala, which is responsible for fear, which can induce fear and anxiety.

CBD, on the other hand, is non-psychoactive, meaning a user does not experience a “high” or any onset of euphoria after ingestion. CBD works antagonistically with THC, diminishing its psychoactive effects. In this sense, opting for strains with a higher or equal ratio of CBD to THC helps alleviate any anxiety giving properties of THC. CBD also has antipsychotic properties.

Summary

Medical marijuana has the potential for treating symptoms of anxiety. However, more research is needed in the area. The strain that works best will depend on the person using it. According to most anecdotes and scientific reports, CBD heavy strains tend to be best for reducing anxiety. Further research exploring the relationship between THC and CBD ratios is important so that doctors are able to effectively prescribe different strains to patients based on their needs.