The cannabis-psychosis debate is being driven by fear mongering, not facts: Globe and Mail

One of the most debated health concerns regarding cannabis is its association with psychosis – particularly for young people. Frustratingly, both sides often resort to cherry picking data or confusing correlation with causation. Anecdotes, rather than science often prop up these arguments.

Not only does this misinformed understanding restrict patients who could potentially benefit from cannabinoid-based medicine’s effects, but as the authors explain, "By ignoring these important contexts, we are framing the onset of mental-health issues as a result of someone's personal choices, and thereby further perpetuating stigma around these conditions for individuals experiencing psychosis or with schizophrenia."

As the conversation continues, it is important to recognize the importance of research over an easy narrative; facts over fear-mongering.

Read full article here.

The new grey market: As older users warm up to cannabis, pot companies want to learn more: Financial Post

Cannabis companies hoping to expand the medical market will have to overcome the conservatism towards cannabis amongst medical associations — both the Ontario Medical Association and the Canadian Medical Association support the dismantling of the medical cannabis regime altogether, arguing that with legalization, there remains no need for medical professionals to serve a “gatekeeper role.”

This kind of opposition, said Pearson, is what makes is so difficult to obtain funding to really understand how cannabis can improve the lives of seniors. “I treat seniors in a long-term care setting and I’m weaning down their use of anti-psychotics and opioids. To just say leave it up to themselves, that means you’re saying they should self-medicate, which is absurd.” Read full article here.

Surgeon General Believes It's High Time For Marijuana Reclassification: Forbes

At the close of 2018, the U.S. Surgeon General Jerome Adams made a bold move, and called on the federal government to rethink marijuana’s classification as a Schedule I substance. 

His belief– and that of researchers around the world– is that the current U.S. classification of marijuana inhibits research for medical advancements that include cannabis and cannabinoids.

This is long over-due and will have wide-reaching benefits for patients all over the world: "Reversing the excessively harsh and prohibitive laws for cannabis in the United States remains essential for making cannabis chemistry real human medicine." Read full article here.

Cannabis oil improves Crohn's disease symptoms: CTV

"Dr. Naftali, whose study is being billed as the first of its kind, found that an eight-week treatment with cannabis oil containing a four to one CBD to THC ratio produced clinical remission in up to 65 per cent of individuals with Crohn’s disease. The randomized, placebo-controlled study involved 50 people with moderately severe forms of the disease. The group that received cannabis oil also reported significant improvements in their quality of life."

Read full article here.

OMA president's comments, apology raise questions about stigma around marijuana: CBC

Really respect those who can recognize when they have made a mistake and take quick action to make it right.

Strongly agree with Dr. Verbora’s perspective that the President of the Ontario Medical Association was circulating information that was accurate, to the best of her knowledge, and respect the fact that she took swift action to correct herself when her colleagues brought newer, more accurate information to her attention.

In this CBC article, Dr. Verbora says the medical community is reluctant to engage with newer research about marijuana:  

"Cannabis is so stigmatized and that's just because in the medical community, the way we talk about it, the way we educate on it, we only talk about the harms and we don't talk about the benefits."    

Cannabis versus Cancer: Scientific American

Scientific American reports: "Countless scientific studies have shown that medical cannabis offers palliative care benefits, including appetite stimulationpain relief and more. But early research indicates that cannabinoids can do so much more. Data is showing that medical marijuana has antitumor effects and may one day be used as a cancer treatment, not just as a drug to ease symptoms of the disease." Full article.