All posts tagged: Adult

Discrepancies in Medical Cannabis Use

Medical Cannabis Use 

A recent letter to the editor exposes the large discrepancy between the number of registered medical marijuana patients and those who self-reported medical cannabis use. Estimates given by the National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH) suggest that 2.5% of Americans over the age of 12 used medical cannabis in 2013-2015 but a study from 2016 found that only 641,176 people were licensed to receive medical cannabis, a prevalence of 0.4%. If the numbers published by the NSDUH are accurate then states may need to delve into how so many people are accessing medical cannabis without proper licensing in order to better regulate the supply. If the numbers are extrapolated to 2019 and include all states where medical cannabis use in legal then more than 6.2 million people should be licensed but may not be.  

Medical cannabis can be difficult to acquire due to its cost, post-legalization. Although medical cannabis in Massachusetts is readily available with a large number of dispensaries across the state, the cost of obtaining a doctor’s recommendation, complying with state fees, and then paying for the cannabis at a dispensary can be too much for some patients. Although MA will soon be waving the state fee, to obtaining a license, clinicians are still expensive and without the support of the federal government allowing national insurance companies to cover medical cannabis the costs still add up quickly. Fortunately, some dispensaries are designed to cater to those who need financial support.

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Benjamin Caplan, MDDiscrepancies in Medical Cannabis Use
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The Effect of Cannabis Consumption on Sperm

Impacts of cannabinoid epigenetics on human development- reflections on Murphy et. al. ‘cannabinoid exposure and altered DNA methylation in rat and human sperm’ epigenetics

An op-ed has praised the work published last year which exposed how pre-conception exposure to cannabis in males is related to alterations in epigenetic regulation of the central nervous and immune systems. Murphy et. al.’s paper ‘Cannabinoid exposure and altered DNA methylation in rat and human sperm,’ revealed that the sperm cells of men who have consumed cannabis are a key vector that may affect neuraxis, heart blood vessels, immune stimulation, secondary genomic instability, and carcinogenesis in the fetus offspring. The author of the response piece extrapolates the data collected by Murphy et. al. to conclude the genome-epigenome is extremely sensitive to environmental toxicants and that further research should examine the epigenomic toxicology of multiple cannabinoids. 

The effect of prenatal exposure to cannabis on birth rates, birth outcomes, and the health of the mother is still uncertain. Studies focussing on cannabis use during pregnancy are limited, and what little has been reported, is inconsistent. The featured article now brings to light that both parents may need to be cautious when attempting to conceive or when having unprotected sex as cannabis may affect both germ cells. Currently, governing bodies of obstetricians advise that pregnant mothers cease any cannabis use so if someone who needs cannabis for a medical purpose that improves their quality of life becomes pregnant they need to seek out alternative methods of treatment. Research is needed so that pregnant women can safely continue their medication or so that alternatives can be found so that women do not need to suffer for the duration of their pregnancy and possible breastfeeding period. 

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This paper is also stored here:    http://bit.ly/2K42H1S     inside the CED Foundation Archive

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Benjamin Caplan, MDThe Effect of Cannabis Consumption on Sperm
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Video: Legalization of Cannabis?

Medical marijuana is legal in 33 states, and recreational marijuana is legal in 11. But on a federal level, the use and possession of marijuana is illegal for any purpose. The illegal status of cannabis prohibits research opportunities and hinders the safety of cannabis sales.

Watch this video for 4 reasons to legalize marijuana on a federal level

Benjamin Caplan, MDVideo: Legalization of Cannabis?
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5 Benefits of Vaping Cannabis (vs smoking)

Within the inhalation method of consuming cannabis, there are many different ways one can inhale it.

The ancient way was almost always to smoke it. In the modern era of cannabis consumption, there are many more popular and advanced ways to consume either flower or concentrates:

  1. “Desktop” models that may use electricity for amplified power,
  2. Portable models that are more useful for inhalation-on-the-go,
  3. Cartridge-based “vape pens” to vaporize potent concentrates in a simple mechanism.

In short time, we will likely see adoption of (and a quickly massive rise in popularity of) aerosolization and nebulized cannabis consumption too!

Are the benefits of vaping strictly limited to cannabinoids? Certainly not.

Are the benefits of vaping even limited to terpenoids? Certainly not.

What else is there? Flavonoids.

And still more? Combinations of these that create entirely new results!

Benjamin Caplan, MD5 Benefits of Vaping Cannabis (vs smoking)
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Cannabis: Vaporizing vs Smoking

Smoking cannabis brings toxins and unhealthy combustion byproducts into the body. With temps in the ~2000’F range for flame, burning flower incinerates a large portion of the product being consumed. As the distance from the point of flame grows, temperatures are lower, and cannabinoids are vaporizing, in addition to being burned by the flame. Over time, as heating technology has improved, there is no longer a need for blasting temperatures way beyond what the material can safely sustain before turning to tar and ash.

Beyond developed habits of consumption, social familiarity, and simplicity of use, one of the reasons many enjoy combustion is the other effects of heat. As with any human contact with extreme heat, blood rushes to the source of heat, and this may present a platform, through which cannabinoids may enter the bloodstream more quickly. The extravagant heat is also aerosolizing many more cannabis compounds than vaporization temperatures typically support, so the effect of flame is often felt to be more intense.

Vaporizing cannabis, however, is less likely to introduce mutations in the polyphenol compounds found in abundance within cannabis, and some of the mutations create terrible molecules known to be caustic and destructive.

If the medical rationale for vaporizing (over combustion) is not convincing, please consider the financial argument: Though purchasing a vaporizer may be costly, it’s a smart investment that could save money in the long run. Learn more by watching this video:

Benjamin Caplan, MDCannabis: Vaporizing vs Smoking
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Evaluating the visual cues of quality for cannabis flower

Ever wonder if your cannabis is high or low quality? These visual clues could help you find out

Benjamin Caplan, MDEvaluating the visual cues of quality for cannabis flower
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Medical cannabis doctors left to handle “backlash” from patients over lack of availability

Though UK doctors have been able to prescribe cannabis since November 2018, very few prescriptions have been issued, because most forms of medical cannabis have not been approved by the government.

In response to thousands of disappointed patients, the House of Commons Health and Social Care Committee called for immediate clinical trials focusing on the treatment of intractable childhood epilepsy. 

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This paper is also stored here:   http://bit.ly/2XXYrEJ      inside the CED Foundation Archive

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Benjamin Caplan, MDMedical cannabis doctors left to handle “backlash” from patients over lack of availability
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Do-it-Yourself Cannabis-infused lubricants

Cannabis-infused lubricant can increase blood flow for men and create full-body experiences for women. Find out how to make your own infused lube at home with this video tutorial!

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Benjamin Caplan, MDDo-it-Yourself Cannabis-infused lubricants
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