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Marijuana Research Papaer

  • Date Submitted: 04/06/2012 06:22 AM
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Cynthia Young
English 5
May 28th, 2008
Research Paper
      The legalization of medical marijuana has been a major issue in the United States. Marijuana is currently one of the most widely used illegal drugs in America ("InFoFacts-Marijuana" 1). Although medical marijuana may be legal in some states, it is illegal in most and it has been rejected by the national government. Marijuana has been used for clinical purposes for many hundreds of years. In fact, the drug dates back thousands of years: “Marijuana’s effects on the mind and body were first recorded by the Chinese emperor Shen-Nung in the twenty-eighth century B.C. The ancient Chinese used cannabis, mixed with wine, as an anesthetic during surgery and praised the medicinal properties of cannabis” (Schlosser 16). The legalization of medical marijuana, however, is controversial because it also has many other effects outside of the medicinal.
      Marijuana is much like a double-edged sword. On the one end, just a few things that medical marijuana is used for are: to treat chronic pain and nausea, increase appetite, and aid the treatment of hepatitis C (Armentano 1; Schlosser 17, 73; Weiss A02). On the other side, Marijuana has shown many adverse effects that include short-term memory loss, damage to the immune system, and increased chances for respiratory diseases (Schlosser 73-74; "InFoFacts-Marijuana" 1; Weil 118). The Federal Drug Administration has approved MARINOL, or more specifically Dronabinol, a drug that synthesizes THC, or delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol, one of the main chemicals in marijuana (“What is MARINOL” 1). MARINOL, like marijuana, is a cannabinoid that reacts with the brain. MARINOL is mainly used to treat nausea and vomiting and increase appetites. It is, however, only prescribed when patients have not properly responded to the other types of medication because it can cause psycho activity or a “high” that may or may not be pleasant (“What is MARINOL” 1).
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