5 Benefits of Using Medicinal Cannabis Tea for Muscular Dystrophy
The term medical cannabis refers to the use of the entire unprocessed marijuana plant, or its basic extracts, to treat the symptoms of certain diseases or disorders. Whether it be through tea or a patch, medical marijuana has shown to reduce symptoms of certain chronic illnesses, and it even has shown to reduce some of the symptoms in muscular dystrophy patients.
The United States Food & Drug Administration (FDA) has, to date, not yet condoned or approved of any type of marijuana for use in the treatment of any disease, even when several states have already legalized it. However, this fact hasn’t stopped medical groups or communities from researching marijuana's effectiveness.
This research is responsible for the isolation of substances known as cannabinoids, which are elements extracted from the plant and that may provide medicinal benefits for certain conditions. This discovery has led the FDA to approve of 2 medications, so far, that feature cannabinoids and are used as a supplementary treatment for certain diseases, like muscular dystrophy. Also, as research continues to advance, it is expected that additional components will be cleared for medicinal use by the FDA over time.
Before jumping into the list of benefits of cannabis for muscular dystrophy patients, it’s relevant to address the subject of why the FDA still hasn’t approved of marijuana for medication. After all, if the government organization responsible for greenlighting substances and elements when they fulfill the levels of quality and safety for their administration on humans, doesn’t approve of a certain element for use, it must mean something, right?
Well, when it comes to marijuana, and any other new substance on the market for use as a medicinal supplement for any chronic illness, rigorous tests and studies must be performed on hundreds or even thousands of human subjects in order to determine the benefits and risks of any potential medication. In the matter of marijuana, there is still not enough evidence and not nearly enough studies on a large scale to showcase the benefits of the medicinal plant, with the exception of the isolated cannabinoid extracts mentioned above.
Furthermore, some preliminary studies suggest that medical marijuana use has been associated with a decrease in the use of prescription opioids, as well as a rise in deaths by overdose. However, similar to those who are vying for the use of marijuana as a medicinal substance, the researchers who claim that the risks are larger than the benefits don’t have enough evidence to support their conclusions. For instance, a study featured in The JAMA Network suggested a strong link between the legalization of medicinal marijuana and fewer deaths by overdose on prescription opioids. However, what the study failed to determine is whether this decrease is actually due to the legalization, nor that the consumption of prescription opioids had possibly altered the subjects’ drug consumption habits. A more detailed analysis revealed that the reduction of the following factors was not only related to the law on medicinal cannabis, but also with law-protected medicinal marijuana dispensaries:
- The reduction in opioid prescriptions
- The reduction in reports of opioid abuse in those who regularly consume them
- The reduction in hospital admissions to treat those addicted to opioids