Although Research Shows Medical Mariuana Works, Critics Say California Center's Research Is Flawed
By Kathleen Doheny, WebMD Health News
Reviewed by Louise Chang, MD
Marijuana can be a promising treatment for some specific, pain-related medical conditions, according to California researchers who presented an update of their findings Wednesday to the California Legislature and also released them to the public.
"I think the evidence is getting better and better that marijuana, or the constituents of cannabis, are useful at least in the adjunctive treatment of neuropathy," Igor Grant, MD, executive vice-chairman of the department of psychiatry at the University of California San Diego School of Medicine and director of the Center for Medicinal Cannabis Research at the University of California, tells WebMD.
"We don't know if it's a front-line treatment. I'm hoping the results of our studies will prompt larger-scale studies that involve a much more varied population."
"This [report given to the Legislature] sets the stage of larger-scale studies,'' he says.
Some experts who reviewed the report say some of the studies are flawed and that they worry about the long-term health effects of marijuana smoke.
Perspective: Medical Marijuana Research
by Neal McNamara
Shane Gustafson came into the business of selling vaporizer machines for use with medical marijuana was because of a sick family member.
Gustafson’s 60-year-old father was using medical marijuana for various ailments. But it got to a point where the side effects of smoked marijuana became unbearable, so his father asked if there was another way to ingest it.
“He was ready to quit,” Gustafson said. “Then he asked me to do research into vaporizer machines.”
After two months of researching the machines, which are manufactured for aromatherapy, Gustafson found and bought one for his father and eventually one for himself.
“I became a true believer,” he said. “I saw the relief my father got out of it. So, I got a hold of the manufacturer.”