Medical Marijana

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Medical Marijana

The use of marijuana for medicinal purposes is an extremely controversial subject. There are many supporters, as well as many that are in opposition to the use of marijuana in any situation. Parties on both sides of the issue are regularly bringing forth new information to endorse their case.

Marijuana, made from an Indian hemp plant that bears the name cannabis sativa, is a mixture of stems, leaves, and flowering tops. The flowering tops are smoked for the tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC, that is concentrated there. THC is the main psychoactive ingredient in marijuana. The use of marijuana as folk medicine began in Central Asia as far back as 3000 B.C. It's use as a pleasure-inducing drug began in the 1900's, becoming widespread in the 1960's and 1970's. In the 60's and 70's, marijuana became the second most popular drug, alcohol being the first. This trend continues today (Berger).

The intoxication, or "high" acquired due to the smoking of marijuana, has two phases. These phases are initial stimulation followed by pleasant tranquillity. The initial stimulation includes giddiness and euphoria, then sedation and tranquillity (Berger). Another of the results of smoking marijuana is an increase in appetite known commonly as "the munchies." Because loss of appetite and nausea are common side effects of illnesses for which marijuana is a possible medicine, "the munchies" is one of marijuana's most valuable medicinal uses (Thompson 149).

There are many mistaken objections pertaining to the use of marijuana as a medicine. One of the most common of these myths is that marijuana is highly addictive, and that long-term users experience physical withdrawals when marijuana use is stopped. In a...

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.... Marijuana has many effects that would benefit patients with terminal diseases by reducing pain and increasing appetite. As a medicine, marijuana is a legitimate treatment for extremely ill sufferers.


Works Cited

Berger, Philip A. "Marijuana." Microsoft Encarta 98 Encyclopedia. CD-ROM. Microsoft Corporation. 1997.

Morgan, John P. and Zimmer, Lynn. Marijuana Myths, Marijuana Facts. Sarasota: Book World Services, Inc. 1997.

The Science of Medical Marijuana. 21 May 1999. .

Thompson, Stephen P., ed. The War on Drugs: Opposing Viewpoints. San Diego: Greenhaven Press, Inc., 1998.

Webster, Maddy. "Legalizing Pot: What You Can Do." High Times. Jan 1999: 30.

Weed Wars: Facts and Stats. CNNInteractive. 1997. .

You: Dealing with Chemotherapy. National Cancer Institute, Institute of Health. 28 Jan. 1999. .
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