Marijuana use throughout the world has increased substantially for both recreational and medicinal purposes. According to the 2022 World Drug Report published by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, cannabis is the most widely used drug on earth. Additional relevant information from this document will be presented.
Other aspects to be discussed regarding clinical pharmacological aspects of marijuana include the endogenous cannabinoid (CB) receptor system, mechanisms of action, adverse effects, addiction liability, physical dependence, withdrawal reactions, contraindications, and drug interactions.
Self-treatment of many conditions includes anxiety, posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and, most significant, chronic pain. However, high-level clinical research needed to document such applications is lacking. In an ongoing pilot study led by Dr. Goldstein, daily doses of FDA-approved THC over a four-week period have been shown to reduce pain scores and use of other analgesic medications in patients with chronic neuropathic pain; these data will be presented.