Marijuana

  • Medical Author:
    Roxanne Dryden-Edwards, MD

    Dr. Roxanne Dryden-Edwards is an adult, child, and adolescent psychiatrist. She is a former Chair of the Committee on Developmental Disabilities for the American Psychiatric Association, Assistant Professor of Psychiatry at Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore, Maryland, and Medical Director of the National Center for Children and Families in Bethesda, Maryland.

  • Medical Editor: Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD
    Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD

    Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD

    Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD, is a U.S. board-certified Anatomic Pathologist with subspecialty training in the fields of Experimental and Molecular Pathology. Dr. Stöppler's educational background includes a BA with Highest Distinction from the University of Virginia and an MD from the University of North Carolina. She completed residency training in Anatomic Pathology at Georgetown University followed by subspecialty fellowship training in molecular diagnostics and experimental pathology.

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Quick GuideMedical Marijuana Pictures Slideshow: Types and Uses For Treatment

Medical Marijuana Pictures Slideshow: Types and Uses For Treatment

Marijuana facts

  • Marijuana's (scientific name is Cannabis sativa) leaves, seeds, stems and/or roots are consumed by marijuana users for the purpose of feeling intoxicated.
  • THC, or tetrahydrocannibinol, is one of the hundreds of compounds within marijuana that has major intoxicating effects.
  • Marijuana that is consumed for medical purposes, like for patients with nausea or poor appetite associated with AIDS or cancer treatment, is legal in a few states of the United States.
  • Possession of marijuana, regardless of its purpose, is illegal in most jurisdictions.
  • Marijuana is the most commonly abused illegal substance worldwide.
  • While the number of people who use marijuana at any one time does not seem to have recently increased, the number of people who have a marijuana-related disorder has risen significantly. This is more or less true depending on age and ethnic group.
  • Medical marijuana, also called marinol (Dronabinol), is a synthetic form of marijuana.
  • There are many ways of referring to marijuana itself, as well as for how it is smoked.
  • The history of marijuana goes back for thousands of years. It was only made illegal in many countries during the 20th century.
  • The use of medical marijuana is currently legal in 20 U.S. states and the District of Columbia. In those jurisdictions, people for whom medical marijuana has been specifically recommended by a physician must carry a (medical) marijuana card that indicates their use of the substance for a clear medical purpose.
  • Attempts to completely legalize the use of marijuana, whether for medicinal purposes or not, remain strongly contested in most jurisdictions.
  • There are a variety of marijuana types, also called strains.
  • Numerous research studies show that marijuana is indeed an addictive substance. The symptoms of addiction to marijuana are similar to those of any other addictive substance.
  • The symptoms of marijuana withdrawal are similar to those of other drugs and include irritability, anger, depression, insomnia, drug craving, and decreased appetite.
  • The negative physical, psychological, and social effects of marijuana are numerous.
  • While most individuals with marijuana abuse or dependence are treated on an outpatient basis, admission to both outpatient and inpatient treatment programs for marijuana addiction has increased over the years.
  • Behavioral and family based treatments have been found to be effective for marijuana abuse and addiction.
  • There is as yet no medication that has yet been shown to be a clearly effective treatment of marijuana-use disorders.
Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 11/19/2015

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