Communication is important in every relationship, especially between doctors and patients. And a new survey suggests that the stigma that has long kept cannabis a dirty secret in the exam room may finally be disappearing.   

The survey of 445 healthcare providers who treat chronic pain found that 72% of them have patients who requested or asked about medical cannabis in the last 30 days. Patients asked about cannabis far more often than other alternative pain treatments, such as acupuncture (37%), physical therapy (13%) and massage (10%).

The online survey was recently conducted by Cannaceutica, a healthcare company developing a line of cannabis products to treat pain. A variety of providers participated in the survey, including general practitioners, pain management specialists, neurologists, rheumatologists, and nurse practitioners.

People weren’t always so willing to talk to healthcare providers about cannabis, fearing they’d be seen as pot heads or even be dropped as patients. National surveys conducted in 2018 and 2019 found that less than 40% of patients told their doctors about their cannabis use.  

More patients are talking about cannabis today, and more doctors are willing to listen. The vast majority of providers (81%) in the Cannaceutica survey believe cannabis will play a role in the future management of chronic pain, but only one in four are likely to recommend it now. The primary factors holding them back are legal and regulatory issues, and the lack of good quality cannabis research.

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The West Virginia Office of Medical Cannabis is holding registration events in several cities in the coming days.

The public events for medical cannabis patients will be held Wednesday in Morgantown at Fairfield Inn and Suites, Thursday in Weston at Hampton Inn and Dec. 7 in Princeton at Country Inn & Suites. Each registration will be held from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Patients can schedule appointments by calling (304) 356-5090. Further information is available online.
 

In addition to the registration events, eligible residents can register for a medical cannabis patient card.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

West Virginia’s first medical cannabis dispensaries opened this month, more than four years after state lawmakers allowed a regulatory system for those products to be established.

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Now that more than half of the U.S. has permitted legalized medical marijuana, it’s clear to see the ripple effects that the law has had.

It’s hard to put into words how far along the fight to end marijuana prohibition has come. It’s fair to assume that much of that progress wouldn’t have been possible without the passage of California’s Prop 215 back in November 1996.

The passage of Prop 215 made it possible for Californians to purchase, possess and use marijuana for a select handful of conditions like cancer, glaucoma, arthritis, HIV and AIDS. Ever since the law passed, medical marijuana has steadily changed the way many Americans view cannabis.

Here are a few key ways the nation’s outlook on cannabis has changed over the course of the last quarter-century.

By Exposing Skeptics to the Healing Properties of Cannabis

Since medical marijuana was relatively unfamiliar to most Americans, the concept needed to be put to the test before earning the trust of most people. The passage of Prop 215 allowed people to receive a firsthand look at the way medical marijuana could improve people’s lives.

Seeing the way medical marijuana helped patients suffering from numerous conditions not only made an impact on the general public, but on the medical community as well since research about the therapeutic effects of medical marijuana were still largely a mystery within the profession.

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Pharmacy chains will be appealing the verdict that they created a public nuisance by contributing the Ohio’s opioid crisis.

A federal jury in Ohio on Tuesday found that pharmacy giants Walgreens, CVS and Walmart contributed to the opioid crisis in that state, a verdict that could serve as a bellwether for thousands of similar cases pending from coast to coast. The decision is the first verdict returned by a jury that holds a pharmacy retailer responsible for its role in the devastating epidemic of opioid overdoses that has plagued the United States for decades.

In the lawsuit, Lake and Trumbell Counties in northeastern Ohio maintained that the pharmacy retailers had recklessly distributed more than 100 million opioid pain pills in the counties, leading to addiction, death and a strain on public services. Between 2012 and 2016, more than 80 million prescriptions painkillers were dispensed in Trumbull County alone, or about 400 pills for every resident. During the same period, approximately 61 million opioid painkillers were dispensed in Lake County.

“For decades, pharmacy chains have watched as the pills flowing out of their doors cause harm and failed to take action as required by law,” a committee of attorneys representing local governments in federal opioid lawsuits said in a statement. “Instead, these companies responded by opening up more locations, flooding communities with pills, and facilitating the flow of opioids into an illegal, secondary market.”

Counties Say Pharmacies Created a Public Nuisance

Attorneys for the plaintiffs argued that the actions of the pharmacies amounted to a public nuisance that cost the counties about $1 billion each to address. Mark Lanier, an attorney representing the counties, said that the pharmacies failed to hire or train enough employees and implement systems to prevent suspicious orders from being filled.

“The law requires pharmacies to be diligent in dealing drugs,” Lanier said. “This case should be a wake-up call that failure will not be accepted.” 

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A ‘world first’ trial assessing a cannabis-based drug to treat an aggressive form of brain cancer is to go ahead, a charity has announced.

Members of the public backed an appeal by the Brain Tumour Charity to raise £400,000 to fund the three-year trial.

Olympic champion Tom Daley also backed the campaign.

The gold medal-winning diver’s father Robert died aged 40 from a brain tumour in 2011.

The study, led by an expert at the University of Leeds, will look at whether adding Sativex – an oral spray containing cannabinoids – to chemotherapy could extend life for people diagnosed with a recurrent glioblastoma.

The trial will begin recruiting 230 patients at 15 hospitals across the UK early next year.

The condition is the most common and aggressive form of brain cancer, and around 2,200 people are diagnosed each year in England alone.
Even after intensive treatment average survival is only 12 to 18 months after diagnosis, the Brain Tumour Charity said.

If the trial proves successful, researchers hope it could represent one of the first additions to NHS treatment for glioblastoma patients in more than a decade.

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U.S.-wide study found cannabis use tripled; may highlight unmet needs in pain control and mental health

Cannabis use among people with rheumatic diseases (RMDs) tripled between 2014 and 2019.

That's according to the first US-wide study designed to evaluate the prevalence of cannabis use in a large population of people with RMDs. The findings appear in Arthritis Care & Research.

Among 11,006 survey respondents, cannabis use increased from 6.3% in 2014 to 18.4% in 2019. The greatest prevalence of use occurred in states where cannabis use has been legalized.

In both years, a clear majority of users (74% in 2014; 62% in 2019) reported that cannabis helped relieve their arthritis symptoms.

Cannabis users were more likely to be taking weak opioids (OR 1.2 [1.0, 1.5]; P=0.03) and or have a history of smoking tobacco (OR 1.7 [1.5, 2.1]; P

As more and more states are voting in favor of recreational and/or medical marijuana, it makes sense people would grow curious about the drug’s potential health benefits. But there are some conflicting viewpoints out there: Some tout THC's pain-relieving qualities and ability to help with seizure disorders, PTSD, and other neurological conditions, while others warn it has been associated with increased psychosis.  

To wade through this giant debate, we asked Rebecca Siegel, M.D., a psychiatrist and licensed prescriber of medical marijuana in New York state: How, exactly, does marijuana affect the brain? 

We should note, we’re talking about chronic use here, which is admittedly hard to identify.

“The research really hasn't been done in a systematic way,” Siegel says on this episode of the mindbodygreen podcast (i.e., each team of researchers can define what they mean by “chronic use”). But from the available data we have, here’s how Siegel navigates all the information. 

1. Decision-making, coordination & impulse control.

When discussing how marijuana affects the brain, it’s important to categorize said affects into the short and long term. So first, let’s spend some time on the short-term: “It can absolutely impact your frontal lobes,” Siegel says. “The decision-making parts of the brain, the impulse control, the executive functioning parts of the brain…The cerebellum, which can affect coordination.” (That’s why you should not drive under the influence of any substance, marijuana included.) 

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Green Labs Provisions, a medical marijuana dispensary in Luna Pier, is open for business.

Owned and operated by Jason (JD) Davison, a 39-year-old veteran, along with Sean Lyden and Breen Lyden, the facility located at 10701 Madison St. specializes in medical cannabis, accessories and apparel.

Open seven days a week from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m., customers must be 18 or older and have valid identification and a medical marijuana card.

The business has 12 employees. Dave Azoni serves as chief operating officer and Stephen Georgiadis is chief plant officer. Budtenders assist customers with in-store purchases and orders can be placed online.

"Many people need help to find what will help them the most and our knowledgeable bud-tenders facilitate that process. We specialize in the finest cannabis in the Michigan market featuring our house brand, Dutch Touch Genetics,” Davison said. “The new business (opened November 3) has been very well-received by the local community and we are starting to gain traction at the store. Many people have commented on how nice our storefront is and how they welcome the investment into their town.”

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Sativyl contains a 27 mg/ml concentration of THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) and 25 mg/ml of CBD. It’s sold by the flask and contains 10 ml and 250 mg of concentration.

Cannabis-based drug Sativyl has been approved as a treatment for cancer-related pain in Peru.Sativyl, produced by Verdemed, was created to be as similar as possible to Sativex, produced by Jazz Pharmaceuticals PLC’s GW Pharmaceuticals and is recommended for the relief of cancer symptoms and spasticity in patients with multiple sclerosis.Among other uses, Sativyl is indicated to relieve strong pain. The medication is considered an efficient, non-addictive substitute for opioids, like morphine or oxycodone.In the United States, opioids are considered a public health issue. The CDC recorded a 28.5% increase in deaths caused by opioid overdoses between April 2020 and April 2021. For the first time ever, the country surpassed the mark of 100,000 drug-related deaths over a year-long period.

An Alternative To Classic Antiemetics

Sativyl also works to control nausea caused by chemotherapy treatment. The antiemetic performance of the medication improves the patient’s appetite and, consequently, their physical condition to face the therapy.

Sativyl contains a 27 mg/ml concentration of THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) and 25 mg/ml of CBD. It’s sold by the flask and contains 10 ml and 250 mg of concentration.

The medicine itself is produced in Canada by the pharmaceutical company Verdemed, in partnership with the Toronto Institute of Pharmaceutical Technology.

The Peruvian health license was approved less than one month after Verdemed received the Brazilian Sanitary Agency (ANVISA) approval to distribute full spectrum 50 mg/ml CBD, a medicine developed in partnership with the American-Colombian company Clever Leaves. Documentation for Sativyl has already been submitted to ANVISA (the Brazilian equivalent of the FDA) for analysis.

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Cannabis has been shown time and time again to improve the lives of those who struggle with certain ailments. Here’s just a small sample.

Medical marijuana is now legal in 36 states and several U.S. territories. Its medical applications continue to broaden as cannabis becomes a mainstream treatment option in this country. 

With this increased accessibility, marijuana is now being researched and used to treat more medical conditions, and some of these may surprise you.

Inflammatory Bowel Diseases

Those who suffer from inflammatory bowel diseases (IBDs), such as Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis, are turning to cannabis for relief. Studies have shown that cannabis can not cure these diseases or stop the symptoms. There have, however, been reports that using marijuana as treatment for the painful symptoms has proven successful.

According to TIME, “patients who used cannabinoids reported significant improvements in abdominal pain, nausea, diarrhea, appetite and overall well-being.” Cannabis cannot prevent these painful diseases, but when used to relieve the symptoms it can be highly effective.

 

Epilepsy

Cannabis has shown promise when used to treat some forms of epilepsy, in particular,  more severe types of the disease. Lennox-Gastaut syndrome and Dravet syndrome are two rare epileptic disorders. Recently the FDA has approved a cannabis-based drug, Epidiolex, to help treat these rarer diseases. 

According to the FDA website, Epidolex is “the first FDA-approved drug that contains a purified drug substance derived from marijuana. It is also the first FDA approval of a drug for the treatment of patients with Dravet syndrome.” This marijuana-based drug is used to treat seizures associated with these diseases and has shown marked success. 

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Commission member Blakemore said it’s crucial to maintain price transparency and breaks down what makes cannabis products work.

The Alabama Medical Cannabis Commission heard from commission member Sam Blakemore Thursday regarding various types of cannabis products that could be made available.

Blakemore said the maximum number of days that could be purchased at a time will be 60, while patients will be allowed to possess up to 70 days worth of cannabis at a time. The maximum dosage would be 75 mg a day of Delta 9 THC and the maximum potency for minors would be 3 percent.

However, Blakemore said there could be room for deviation in some instances.

“Neurologists treat to effect,” Blakemore said. “When it comes to products, you’re going to treat to an effect, not to a packaged labeling. Practicing neurologists would submit in writing why they are exceeding the maximum dose.”

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Using cannabis to help with sleep should be treated as a therapy rather than a nightly routine.

The last two years have tested the mental strength of millions of people. A good night’s sleep, in particular, has proved struggle for many as anxiety skyrocketed and routines were broken and shattered during the pandemic.

The term “coronasomnia” was even coined by doctors, while pharmaceutical sleep prescriptions increased 20 per cent.

While some people opted for pharmaceutical relief, many suffered through their restless legs and anxiety. Others still opted for another kind of sleep remedy: cannabis.

Marijuana has been used as a sleep aid discretely for generations. Over time, word has spread of its calming and relaxing effect on those who use it.

“Research on the possible sleep effects of cannabis date back to the 1970s, but high-quality studies are scarce because of the drug’s legal status,” notes Medical News Today. The research may not be nearly as extensive as with other sleep aids, but it has not deterred many people from turning to the plant, especially during recent times.

Some say marijuana has the ability to return those with anxiety or altered sleep habits back to a normal rhythm. “Marijuana is an effective sleep aid because it restores a person’s natural sleep cycle, which so often falls out of sync with our schedules in today’s modern lifestyle,” Dr. Matt Roman, a medical marijuana physician told Healthline.

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Migraines are the third most prevalent illness in the world, affecting an estimated 1 billion people worldwide. Incredibly, despite the prevalence of this malady, traditional medicine has yet to offer an answer. 

It’s not that there aren’t treatments for migraines; it’s that many people find these treatments don’t work. In some cases, the treatments themselves cause other serious problems. Meanwhile, migraine sufferers are going through hell, suffering pain, nausea, dizziness and more–sometimes for days on end.  

Given the number of people who suffer from these debilitating headaches, there’s real urgency to study alternative ways of treating migraine headaches. The latest of these? Cannabis. 

But, there are enough questions about cannabis and migraines that a simple internet search on the subject can easily become a headache all its own. Fortunately, we’ve saved you the trouble.

What is a migraine headache? 

A migraine is an attack on the central nervous system. Along with the pain we might expect from a severe headache, a migraine can cause nausea, vomiting, and intestinal issues. 

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Many founders of cannabis companies have origin stories about how the powerful plant changed their lives – from enhanced intimacy and increased focus to better performance in sports and better sleep. I, however, do not have the same story. In fact, I was never really interested in cannabis and was somewhat of a reluctant participant. (article originally appeared on Benzinga.com)

But I had the grave misfortune of becoming life-threateningly ill with Crohn’s disease that went undiagnosed for many years. And I’m not alone. 74% of Americans have ongoing digestive trouble and 70 million have a chronic GI condition. Unfortunately, I am part of that 74%. 

While doctors prescribed opioids, my husband suggested I try cannabis products with high levels of CBD as an alternative. I was skeptical, but out of options. The end results were incredible as I saw first-hand how it worked to reduce inflammation and manage my pain. Being introduced to cannabis made living my life possible again and has become the single most effective therapy for me and my disease.

At the time, the sources of high CBD to THC ratio medicine were unreliable. After getting a bad batch of tinctures that gave me arsenic poisoning, I knew I had to take matters into my own hands. I established my own collective and began to legally grow my own medicine since I was having trouble getting access to clean medicine in an unregulated market. 
 

Combining learnings from my previous career as a fashion, beauty and marketing expert with my new experience as a farmer and Crohns’ patient, I sought out the best chemists working in the business and set about making the highest quality cannabis wellness products available on the market today. I now own and operate one of California’s largest legal outdoor cannabis farms and sell about half a million pounds of cannabis wholesale each year. 

Together with my husband, we grow about 22-acres of cannabis on our 63-acre organic farm but like all farmers, we have to operate on thin margins to ensure we are around next year and for years to come. This requires scale and efficiency like any agricultural endeavor but because it is cannabis we also have to navigate intense public scrutiny, legislative complexity and constantly evolving regulations at the state and local levels.

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Almost 67,000 pounds of medical marijuana have been sold in Arkansas since May 2019.

Almost 67,000 pounds – roughly the weight of two F-35 fighter jets – of medical marijuana have been sold in Arkansas since May 2019, with the state collecting just under $45 million in taxes on the sales.

Licensed dispensaries in the state have sold 66,994 pounds of medical marijuana since the first dispensary opened in May 2019, with the value of the sales at $447 million.

Medical marijuana patients purchased 3,527 pounds of medical marijuana from the state’s 37 dispensaries in October, according to the Arkansas Department of Finance and Administration, the parent agency of the Arkansas Medical Marijuana Commission. Most of the tax revenue is placed in the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences National Cancer Designation Trust Fund.
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Some say marijuana has the ability to return those with anxiety or altered sleep habits back to a normal rhythm.

The last two years have tested the mental strength of millions. Sleep in particular has been a struggle for many as anxiety skyrocketed and routines broke and shattered during the pandemic. The term “coronasomia” was even coined by doctors, while pharmaceutical sleep prescriptions increased 20%.While some people opted for pharmaceutical relief, many suffered through their restless legs and anxiety. Still others opted for another kind of sleep remedy — cannabis.

“As people grapple with anxiety and insomnia, they are turning to cannabis because of its effectiveness and ease of treating such a variety of stress-related conditions,” Ganja Goddess CEO, Zachary Pitts, wrote in an email to Forbes.

Marijuana has been used as a sleep aid discretely for generations. Over time, word has spread of its calming and relaxing effect on those who use it.

“Research on the possible sleep effects of cannabis date back to the 1970s, but high-quality studies are scarce because of the drug’s legal status,” wrote Medical News Today. The research may not be nearly as extensive as with other sleep aids, but it has not deterred many from turning to it, especially in recent times.

Some say marijuana has the ability to return those with anxiety or altered sleep habits back to a normal rhythm. “Marijuana is an effective sleep aid because it restores a person’s natural sleep cycle, which so often falls out of sync with our schedules in today’s modern lifestyle,” Dr. Matt Roman, a medical marijuana physician told Healthline.

With the limited amount of testing performed using cannabis on sleep patients, the most noticeable patterns have been found in those with existing sleep issues. Many with nightmares, anxiety and even PTSD have shown improvement when occasionally using cannabis as sleep therapy.

According to Psychology Today, “Among people with active difficulty falling asleep, cannabis use resulted in an average of 30 minutes less time in falling asleep.” The study also continued, mentioning that those who normally did not have trouble sleeping fell asleep even faster than normal.

If you opt to try cannabis to help you sleep, you may find yourself overwhelmed with your choices when it comes to strains and potencies. It is important to remember that sleep issues are often individual problems that have unique solutions.

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Exercise increases the body’s own cannabis-like substances, which in turn helps reduce inflammation and could potentially help treat certain conditions such as arthritis, cancer, and heart disease.In a new study, published in Gut Microbes, experts from the University of Nottingham found that exercise intervention in people with arthritis, did not just reduce their pain, but it also lowered the levels of inflammatory substances (called cytokines). It also increased levels of cannabis-like substances produced by their own bodies, called endocannabinoids. Interestingly, the way exercise resulted in these changes was by altering the gut microbes.

Exercise is known to decrease chronic inflammation, which in turn causes many diseases including cancer, arthritis, and heart disease, but little is known as to how it reduces inflammation.

A group of scientists, led by Professor Ana Valdes from the School of Medicine at the University, tested 78 people with arthritis. Thirty-eight of them carried out 15 minutes of muscle-strengthening exercises every day for six weeks, and 40 did nothing.

At the end of the study, participants who did the exercise intervention had not only reduced their pain, but they also had more microbes in their guts of the kind that produce anti-inflammatory substances, lower levels of cytokines, and higher levels of endocannabinoids.

The increase in endocannabinoids was strongly linked to changes in the gut microbes and anti-inflammatory substances produced by gut microbes called SCFAS.  In fact, at least one-third of the anti-inflammatory effects of the gut microbiome was due to the increase in endocannabinoids.

Doctor Amrita Vijay, a Research Fellow in the School of Medicine and first author of the paper, said: “Our study clearly shows that exercise increases the body’s own cannabis-type substances. Which can have a positive impact on many conditions.

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If you're a fan of crunchy textures and nutty flavors, hemp seeds might have place on your plate. The tiny seeds are easy to use and eat, making them ideal for snacks and entrées alike. What's more, hemp seeds are packed with essential nutrients like protein, vitamins, and minerals, just to name a few. Read on to learn about the health benefits of hemp seeds, plus how to use them at home.

 

What Are Hemp Seeds?

Hemp seeds are the edible oval-shaped seeds of the hemp plant. The plant is related to marijuana, but it has no psychoactive effects. That's because hemp—unlike marijuana—doesn't contain noteworthy amounts of THC, the chemical that produces a "high" feeling. Whole hemp seeds also boast a hard light brown shell and extra crunchy texture. However, hemp seeds are often hulled (i.e., de-shelled) to expose greenish-beige kernels. These hulled hemp seeds, also called hemp hearts or hemp nuts, are softer but still slightly crunchy. In the supermarket, hemp hearts are usually in the nuts and seeds section. You can also find hemp seeds in powder form, commonly in plant-based protein powders.

The Health Benefits Associated with Eating Hemp Seeds

Despite their small size, hemp seeds are teeming with essential nutrients. They're rich in omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, also known as "good" fats. "These fats may help manage cholesterol, triglyceride, and blood pressure levels," explains registered dietitian Victoria Whittington, R.D. Your body can't produce these fats, so it's important to get them via foods like hemp seeds, salmon, and walnuts. "Hemp seeds are [also] an excellent source of vitamin E and minerals, such as potassium, magnesium, calcium, iron, and zinc," notes Whittington. "Vitamin E is a powerful antioxidant that reduces oxidative stress, promotes healthy skin, manages diabetes, and [potentially] eases osteoarthritis." Meanwhile, the minerals in hemp seeds support a range of basic functions, from immunity to brain health.

In terms of protein, hemp seeds are exceptionally impressive. According to Susan Greeley, R.D.N., registered dietitian nutritionist and chef-instructor at the Institute of Culinary Education, they're one of the few plant-based sources of complete protein, meaning they offer all nine essential amino acids. A quick nutrition lesson: "Amino acids are the building blocks of all proteins in the body," says Greeley. However, the body can't make all nine essential amino acids, notes Whittington, so it's crucial to get them through the diet. Most sources of complete protein are animal products (think: meat, eggs, and dairy), but hemp seeds are a wonderful plant-based option for getting your fill.

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Mississippi patients hoping on a green light for the state’s medical marijuana program before year’s end are likely to be disappointed.

The situation to date: In 2020, the state’s lawmakers put together a ballot initiative to legalise medical cannabis – and 69.2% of voters supported it in November last year.  But Mississippi governor Tate Reeves wasn’t thrilled with the prospect and that meant trouble lay ahead.

In May this year, hopes for the program kicking off in 2021 were dashed by a Supreme Court decision ruled the ballot initiative invalid due to a technicality – and the state’s voters were overwhelmingly unhappy with the court’s decision. 70% wanted the legislature to pass the law with wording exactly matching the amendment approved by voters.

But it was back to the drawing board for lawmakers, who began to hammer out details for a re-jiggered program. That process has seen its fair share of drama, such as Mississippi State Agriculture and Commerce Commissioner Andy Gipson digging his heels in regarding a proposal his department would be tasked with medical marijuana oversight.

That issue was expected to get sorted and Governor Tate Reeves to call a special session with view to the Legislature passing the measure this year. Things haven’t turned out that way. Governor  Reeves wants stricter limits on the quantity of medical cannabis patients can buy and to limit the THC strength in products.

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Cannabis has anti-bacterial properties for those Winter sore throats.

Cannabis possesses compounds that are antibacterial and anti-inflammatory. This makes it fit to fight against strep throat bacterial infections. Different studies have shown that when used, cannabis products (especially cannabis oils) can improve the antibacterial activity of antibiotics which are being used to treat strep throat symptoms.

What is strep throat?

Strep throat is a bacterial infection that causes feelings of pain, itching, and some other forms of irritation in the throat. All these symptoms get more intense when swallowing.

Unlike sore throat which can be caused by both viral infections and bacterial infections, strep throat can only be induced by bacterial agents. The type of throat infection caused by bacteria is streptococcal pharyngitis. It is not so common, as most throat infections are brought about by viral infections. The symptoms of strep throat can be managed with antibiotics to prevent the condition from worsening.

Symptoms of Strep throat

These include

Swollen tonsils

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