A new study released by the Journal of Clinical Oncology found that a large number of U.S. doctors have discussed medical cannabis with their patients. However, some don’t feel informed enough to recommend it as an alternative to traditional medications. The study found that, “Although 70% of oncologists do not feel equipped to make clinical recommendations regarding (Medical Marijuana), the vast majority conduct discussions with patients about (Medical Marijuana) and nearly one-half do, in fact, recommend it clinically.”
A Need For More Medical Cannabis Education
Medical cannabis is currently legal in 29 states and Washington D.C. and 61% of Americans believe cannabis should be legal for medicinal purposes. Doctors are recommending medical cannabis products at higher rates than ever before. Most of these doctors subscribe to traditional medical doctrines and most likely have not been exposed to enough credible scientific evidence to feel comfortable recommending it to patients.
The Journal of Clinical Oncology study found that 46% of clinical physicians have recommended cannabis before but 70% feel they are not adequately equipped to confidently make those medical recommendations. This exemplifies the disconnect between proponents of medical cannabis and the traditional medical community.
Dr Sanjay Gupta was not always a supporter of medical marijuana. In fact, Dr Gupta stated “I mistakenly believed the Drug Enforcement Agency when they listed marijuana as a Schedule 1 substance because of sound scientific proof. Surely, they must have quality reasoning as to why marijuana is in the category of the most dangerous drugs that have ‘no accepted medicinal use and a high potential for abuse. They didn’t have the science to support that claim and I now know that when it comes to marijuana neither of those things are true. It doesn’t have a high potential for abuse and there are very legitimate medical applications. In fact, sometimes the only thing that works.” -Dr Sanjay Gupta #research #cannabis #medicine #medicalcannabis #medicalmarijuana #drsanjaygupta #schedule1 #legalize #legalizeit #medicalmarijuana411 #science
Doctors Believe In Cannabis
This study found that doctors want more information about the benefits of medical cannabis. “A majority believes MM (medical marijuana) is useful for certain indications.” The results went on to find that, “67% viewed it as a helpful adjunct to standard pain management strategies, and 65% thought MM is equally or more effective than standard treatments for anorexia and cachexia.”
There have been many studies over the past few years on the efficacy of cannabis treatment for pain and symptoms like anorexia. But it appears the medical community is lagging behind the scientific research community when it comes to benefits of medical cannabis.
Nearly 60% of the United States has already legalized medical cannabis, so traditional clinicians will need further education on the benefits of cannabis as medicinal treatment. Doctors work based on facts and research. The more information they have available, the better prepared they are to create a treatment plan for their patients. Education on medical cannabis is no different than the traditional education doctors receive. The more information doctors have about cannabis, the better.
Lane is based in Southern California and is a content curator for Medical Marijuana 411. He focuses his research into finding informative stories that can help medical marijuana patients better understand their diverse medicine.