The use of this plant reduces symptoms of multiple diseases, since cannabinoid receptors play an essential role in the nervous system.
Dr. José Silva, general practitioner. Photo: provided by the doctor.
According to Dr. José Silva, a general practitioner, the use of cannabis for medicinal purposes provides great benefits in the symptoms of patients who suffer from conditions such as fibromyalgia, ulcerative colitis, rheumatoid arthritis, multiple sclerosis, as well as different psychiatric, inflammatory and autoimmune conditions.
In the case of conditions such as fibromyalgia, Dr. Silva assures that studies have been carried out by pioneering doctors in the use of medical cannabisparticularly in Europe, who have identified in the patients a deficiency of endocannabinoids, (which are produced by the human body), which would allow progress in the use of these therapeutic alternatives to generate a positive impact on the body. “In that sense, there has already been an identification of that blood deficiency of cannabinoids in patients with fibromyalgia,” he explained.
According to Bedrocan, a producer of medical cannabis legal, the human brain and other organs contain natural cannabinoid (CB) receptors and chemicals linked to them, this is known as the system endocannabinoid human (SEC). The role of the ECS is to maintain the body’s ability to function, usually by influencing the functioning of other systems, this includes adjusting the response to painappetite, digestion, sleep, mood, inflammation and memory.
Even though he medical cannabis it is not curative, it has been used for many years to treat the different ailments of the human being; In this regard, the doctor indicates that it has been difficult to study and understand it for health professionals themselves, due to the active ingredients that make it up and their effects on the body.
“It is a subject that requires a lot of self-study due to the particular regulation of the FDA in the US, scientific studies have been quite slow and have been limited in establishing the benefits of cannabis more accurately,” he explained. However, some States already have regulations to use the medical cannabis.
It is worth mentioning that the medical cannabis can cause side effects in patientsHowever, the same is true with different medications. “Precisely for this reason it is important to know and educate yourself about what these products should have depending on the needs of each patient,” said Dr. Silva.
In addition, he emphasized that “if one as a doctor does not know how to recommend a suitable product for the patient, in some cases we can trigger effects that can affect their condition.”
The dosage varies according to the condition of each patient and the medical indications, since the treatment is individualized. Some patients they can respond well to different medications and others do not, with cannabis it works the same. “What you have to keep in mind are the initial suggested dosages so that the patient has a frame of reference and avoids possible side effects,” she added.
Regarding the main active ingredient of marijuana, THC, that is, delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol, which is found in the leaves and buds of the marijuana plant, Dr. Silva explains that a patient who uses the medical cannabis won’t do it with one dose greater than that consumed in clandestine markets. “In the underground market, in most cases the patient will be using approximately 50-70 milligrams of THC, but it depends on the amount of the product, if it is 1 gram, there may be 20% THC and the amount they will use the patients It will be much smaller.”
Likewise, he emphasized that for the use of cannabis, a frequency in dose controlled with certain periodicity, instead of opting for a dose discharge for immediate relief. “There are conditions in which that is not going to happen, in which it takes time to be controlled, such as inflammatory conditions, that is not achieved with dose high but with consistency in treatment.
The doctor explained that in the case of people with cancer, cannabis interacts with medications and is not 100% harmless, so responsible use is ideal for all patientssince the antitumor effects of cannabis use have been evidenced through studies.
“There are certain laboratory studies in which improvement of different symptom, however, is not the same as carrying the general population. The most important thing is that the nausea, pain, insomnia, depression and anxiety that exist with the diagnosis of cancer can be addressed with this alternative, avoiding polypharmacy, because many of the problems of patients in the long term is that when they begin to treat their symptoms, they have to add medications that have side effects every time” Dr. Silva emphasized.
In the same way, he specified that the specialist must be aware of the medications that are being given to the patient within chemotherapy.
Another important point is the use of cannabis in patients of very young ages who are using dose inadequate with high THC, because that generates a long-term deterioration after 15 to 20 years of use; however, the doctor explained that these studies have been carried out in patients who use it for a more recreational than medicinal purpose.
Cannabis dosing includes alternatives such as sublingual drops, edible ranges, waxes, flora, vaporizable oils, topicals and creams. “Topicals are used for joint and/or muscle pain, it can be used for skin conditions. In my experience I have tried patients with atopic dermatitis and we have been able to have a localized relief” explained Dr. Silva.
He also warned about products that do not have specific information on the amounts to be ingested, since it can be harmful for the patient not to know the dosage that is administered. “This means that the patient cannot standardize the treatment and does not have a consistent improvement, which is why it is essential to consult with your doctor before opening any product.”
In Puerto Rico there are different regulations for the use of medical cannabis. On the island there are about 120,000 patients certificates and regulation monitors the process from manufacturing to dispensaries where the different presentations are obtained. According to the doctor, products containing more than 0.3% THC are only available from a certified dispensary.
In addition, he stated that one of the most important points of the regulation is that every product made in Puerto Rico and every flower sold has to be grown on the Island, in order to follow up on the process of medical cannabis and monitor domestic production.
Finally, the doctor explained that for a Puerto Rican patient to be certified and qualified, they must have one of the conditions approved by the Department of Health, “we must also have evidence, be it of medications, plate reading, X-ray, pathology report or even a referral from your primary care doctor or specialist, however, the reality is that there are certain conditions that can be a bit difficult to check, such as anxiety disorders or insomnia”.
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