Medicinal cannabis and medical marijuana
Medical Marijuana is a popular word which means the medicinal use of cannabis. In 1994, the word medical marijuana ('mediweed') has been added by Wernard Bruining to our language. Medicinal cannabis is cannabis that has been subscribed by a doctor as medication, such as Bedrocan, Bedrobinol, Bediol and Bedica.  Mediweed is cannabis from medicinal species that were not subscribed or sold professionally.

Medicinal use for centuries
Medicinally, cannabis has been used for centuries in many parts of the world. The oldest applications known are from China, approximately 2800 years before Christ. The plant and her seeds has been used for all kind of things, such as infections, skin irritations, open wounds, to stimulate the nervous system and as a general stimulant. Diuretic and laxative, deworming and the fresh leaf even helped for the bite of a scorpion.

Modern medical applications
Also in Europe cannabis was cultivated in herb gardens. The plant was used for mania, hysteria, delirium tremens, phobia, tetanus and cholera. In the 19th century, before aspirin was discovered, cannabis was known in the whole world as painkiller.  In the 20th century scientific research started to modern, medical applications of medicinal cannabis. Nowadays, the effect of medicinal cannabis has been proven scientifically for the following medical conditions:

  • Chronic pains caused by cancer, for example, or phantom pains.
  • Muscle pains and MS pains.
  • Nausea and vomiting, caused by cancer chemotherapy for example. And aids
  • Syndrome of Gilles de la Tourette, especially against the tics that are the result of this syndrome. 
  • Chronic pain, especially when the cause lies in the nervous system.
  • Therapy-resistant glaucoma.

Besides, medicinal cannabis is used because of its general function, such as relaxation of the muscles, mind-expanding effects, improvement of the blood circulation, aphrodisiacal effect when having sexual complaints and relief of menstrual complaints.

Medicinal cannabis 
Medicinal cannabis has been successfully applied for the following conditions (not yet researched at large scale): Rheumatism, migraine, epilepsy, ulcerative colitis, Crohn's disease, Alzheimer's disease, anorexia, Parkinson's disease, Asthma, AD / HD, Anxiety Disorder, ME / Chronic fatigue, sleep disorder, Eczema / itching, Fibromyalgia, lung cancer and brain tumor. [Also: www.cannabis-med.org]

Differences between medicinal and recreational strains
How does medicinal marijuana work and what are the most important differences between medicinal and recreational strains?  CBD reduces the psychoactive effects of THC and enhances the medicinal properties of THC and CBN. Cannabis plants produce more than 80 types of cannabinoids. The best known and best studied are tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC, Cannabidiol or CBD; and cannabinol that is abbreviated to CBN. 

Neurotransmitters
Humans produce a neurotransmitter in the brain that belongs to the group of cannabinoids, the substance Anandamida. In the whole human body, receptors are present for Anandamide, especially in the brain. This system of Anandamida receptors in the human body is called the endo cannabinoid system. Through this system, cannabinoids in cannabis can bind with the endo cannabinoid receptors in the human body. This reaction is the base of all psychoactive and medicinal effects of cannabis.

Medicinal cannabis
At the moment, medicinal cannabis does not play a role in curing conditions, but it can reduce complaints that are the result of conditions. Furthermore, medicinal cannabis can help to reduce the dosage and side-effects of other medication. Often, a doctor subscribes medicinal cannabis when the normal treatment and medication do not help sufficiently or cause to many side-effects.

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CBD is a cannabinoid
CBD is a cannabinoid that is known for its strong medicinal effect, without having psychoactive effects. You will not get high or stoned from it.  Medicinal types of cannabis have a high CBD content and a low THC content. The relation between CBD and THC is at least 1 to 1.

Composition based on complaints
Which variety is the most suitable, depends on the complaints. There are, for example, indications that cannabis with a high CBD content works well against pains and spasms during inhalation, such as with multiple scleroses (MS). Cannabis with mostly THC is preferred for complaints such as the syndrome of Gilles de la Tourette and therapy resistant glaucoma, and for complaints such as weight loss, nausea and vomiting. When suffering from chronic nerve pains, one often starts with CBD rich species and if pain reduction is unsatisfactorily, one can switch to a variety with a higher TCH content.

Honey Bee or the Queen Bee extractor 
Medicinal cannabis can be smoked, but medically often one chooses a pure and less-harmful way of intake. You can make a tea of medicinal cannabis, though vaporizing in a vaporizer is also very popular and effective. Medicinal hash or weed oil is easy to make yourself with the help of the Honey Bee or the Queen Bee extractor. This oil can be diluted and taken in under the tongue or mixed with a good plant based (hemp seed) oil for external use directly on the skin for complaints of eczema and psoriasis.

Source: [Cannabisbureau.nl Ministerie van Volksgezondheid, Welzijn en Sport.
www.cannabis-med.org]