"Marijuana is a plant that has been 'demonized' in history, people see it with a negative connotation; However, the therapeutic use has a proven scientific basis ", explains the endocrinologist Joaquín Armenta, who has been studying the medical use of cannabis for more than six years. He points out that due to the misconceptions surrounding the subject, it is necessary to explain how it works and demolish the existing myths.


Medicinal Uses

The cultivation of hemp (another of the names of cannabis) dates back to 4,000 BC, in very ancient times of mankind, long before the Christian era, with textile and ritual uses. In the American continent the plant was introduced by the Spaniards, in the seventeenth century, who used it as mooring fiber for their ships. With the passage of time these uses of cannabis were changing and in the different societies arose the medicinal and recreational applications. It is currently the most widely used illegal psychoactive substance in the world.

Apart from recreational use, this plant has chemical compounds that have been proven effective in the treatment of various diseases. Jairo Téllez, a toxicologist at the National University of Colombia, points out that according to scientific evidence, cannabis derivatives are used to treat five groups of diseases. The first group integrates chronic inflammatory conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis or osteoarthritis that can occur in the knee, hip, elbow and spine.

"These diseases are suffered by a large number of people and currently the only resource is a series of drugs that are effective, but produce side effects such as irritation in the stomach, among others," the toxicologist describes and points out that for these cases the derivatives of the cannabis -specifically cannabinoids- applied locally, decrease pain and inflammation in the tissues improving the quality of life of patients.

The second group has to do with diseases that cause pain such as cancer in the terminal stage. Fractures of vertebrae, femur or hip are also part of this segment. "These are very painful conditions and these drugs, derived from marijuana, are useful because they reduce pain."

People with Parkinson's disease can also benefit, because the lack of coordination in the extremities can be alleviated with the active compound that affects the rigid muscles. "In this case, as an anti-inflammatory, it reduces the muscular rigidity that causes erratic movements. It does not cure the disease, but it does improve the symptoms and quality of life, "he reiterates.

The fourth proven medical benefit occurs in chemotherapy treatments against cancer that among its side effects cause uncontrollable vomiting and loss of appetite.

"The drugs designed for these patients in particular contain the cannabinoids with small amounts of the compound called tetrahydrocannabinol, generating a relaxation of the digestive sphincters and removing the sensation of nausea and vomiting. In addition, it improves the appetite ", explains the toxicologist.

In the fifth group of conditions are severe injuries such as traumas cranioencephalic, mentioned at the beginning, which together with internal bleeding can lead to thrombosis. The potent anti-inflammatory action diminishes the effect of the hemorrhages in this type of traumas.

The above correspond to cases in which there is sufficient medical evidence, but the action of the compounds is currently being studied for conditions such as glaucoma, Alzheimer's, epilepsy, among other cases.


Source: https://www.elheraldo.co