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The therapeutic potential of cannabis and cannabinoids.

Abstract

BACKGROUND

Cannabis-based medications have been a topic of intense study since the endogenous cannabinoid system was discovered two decades ago. In 2011, for the first time, a cannabis extract was approved for clinical use in Germany.

METHODS

Selective literature review.

RESULTS

Cannabis-based medications exert their effects mainly through the activation of cannabinoid receptors (CB1 and CB2). More than 100 controlled clinical trials of cannabinoids or whole-plant preparations for various indications have been conducted since 1975. The findings of these trials have led to the approval of cannabis-based medicines (dronabinol, nabilone, and a cannabis extract [THC:CBD=1:1]) in several countries. In Germany, a cannabis extract was approved in 2011 for the treatment of moderate to severe refractory spasticity in multiple sclerosis. It is commonly used off label for the treatment of anorexia, nausea, and neuropathic pain. Patients can also apply for government permission to buy medicinal cannabis flowers for self-treatment under medical supervision. The most common side effects of cannabinoids are tiredness and dizziness (in more than 10% of patients), psychological effects, and dry mouth. Tolerance to these side effects nearly always develops within a short time. Withdrawal symptoms are hardly ever a problem in the therapeutic setting.

CONCLUSION

There is now clear evidence that cannabinoids are useful for the treatment of various medical conditions.

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  • Authors+Show Affiliations

    ,

    nova-Institut GmbH, Chemiepark Knapsack, Hürth.

    Source

    Deutsches Arzteblatt international 109:29-30 2012 Jul pg 495-501

    MeSH

    Anorexia
    Cannabinoids
    Cannabis
    Chronic Pain
    Evidence-Based Medicine
    Humans
    Muscle Spasticity
    Nausea
    Vomiting

    Pub Type(s)

    Journal Article
    Review

    Language

    eng

    PubMed ID

    23008748

    Citation

    Grotenhermen, Franjo, and Kirsten Müller-Vahl. "The Therapeutic Potential of Cannabis and Cannabinoids." Deutsches Arzteblatt International, vol. 109, no. 29-30, 2012, pp. 495-501.
    Grotenhermen F, Müller-Vahl K. The therapeutic potential of cannabis and cannabinoids. Dtsch Arztebl Int. 2012;109(29-30):495-501.
    Grotenhermen, F., & Müller-Vahl, K. (2012). The therapeutic potential of cannabis and cannabinoids. Deutsches Arzteblatt International, 109(29-30), pp. 495-501.
    Grotenhermen F, Müller-Vahl K. The Therapeutic Potential of Cannabis and Cannabinoids. Dtsch Arztebl Int. 2012;109(29-30):495-501. PubMed PMID: 23008748.
    * Article titles in AMA citation format should be in sentence-case
    TY - JOUR T1 - The therapeutic potential of cannabis and cannabinoids. AU - Grotenhermen,Franjo, AU - Müller-Vahl,Kirsten, Y1 - 2012/07/23/ PY - 2011/09/09/received PY - 2012/01/26/accepted PY - 2012/9/26/entrez PY - 2012/9/26/pubmed PY - 2013/3/2/medline SP - 495 EP - 501 JF - Deutsches Arzteblatt international JO - Dtsch Arztebl Int VL - 109 IS - 29-30 N2 - BACKGROUND: Cannabis-based medications have been a topic of intense study since the endogenous cannabinoid system was discovered two decades ago. In 2011, for the first time, a cannabis extract was approved for clinical use in Germany. METHODS: Selective literature review. RESULTS: Cannabis-based medications exert their effects mainly through the activation of cannabinoid receptors (CB1 and CB2). More than 100 controlled clinical trials of cannabinoids or whole-plant preparations for various indications have been conducted since 1975. The findings of these trials have led to the approval of cannabis-based medicines (dronabinol, nabilone, and a cannabis extract [THC:CBD=1:1]) in several countries. In Germany, a cannabis extract was approved in 2011 for the treatment of moderate to severe refractory spasticity in multiple sclerosis. It is commonly used off label for the treatment of anorexia, nausea, and neuropathic pain. Patients can also apply for government permission to buy medicinal cannabis flowers for self-treatment under medical supervision. The most common side effects of cannabinoids are tiredness and dizziness (in more than 10% of patients), psychological effects, and dry mouth. Tolerance to these side effects nearly always develops within a short time. Withdrawal symptoms are hardly ever a problem in the therapeutic setting. CONCLUSION: There is now clear evidence that cannabinoids are useful for the treatment of various medical conditions. SN - 1866-0452 UR - https://www.unboundmedicine.com/medline/citation/23008748/The_therapeutic_potential_of_cannabis_and_cannabinoids_ L2 - https://dx.doi.org/10.3238/arztebl.2012.0495 DB - PRIME DP - Unbound Medicine ER -