Marijuana has been used for thousands of years for medical conditions, as well as for recreational purposes. The terms “marijuana” and “cannabis” are used interchangeably; however, cannabis is the more contemporary clinical designation. The use of marijuana has increased recently among US adults (18 years and older), from 10% in 2002 to 13% in 2014. The rise in marijuana use coincides with a declining perception of risk linked with its use, and its use is more prevalent in states with permissive medical marijuana laws. As of November 2016, 28 states and the District of Columbia have legalized medical marijuana, and 16 states have laws permitting the use of cannabidiol (CBD; a nonpsychoactive constituent of cannabis) for medical purposes. Seven states (Alaska, California, Colorado, Massachusetts, Nevada, Oregon, and Washington) and the District of Columbia have legalized both medical and recreational cannabis use.
In 2014, over 110,000 people in Colorado (2% of the population) were registered as medical marijuana users for conditions such as cancer, pain, glaucoma, or cachexia.2 As many as 2.6 million people are registered medical marijuana users nationwide. The legalization of medical marijuana in many states has occurred despite the fact that the FDA has yet to approve plant-based marijuana for any medical condition. The FDA has approved 2 synthetic cannabinoids, dronabinol (synthetic THC) and nabilone, for management of nausea and vomiting associated with cancer chemotherapy. Dronabinol is also approved for appetite stimulation in patients with wasting due to acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS)...
- Pharmacists, Nurse Practitioners, Clinical Nurse Specialists, and Registered Nurses
This CE activity was developed by The Rx Consultant, a publication of Continuing Education Network, Inc.
CE activities for Pharmacists and Pharmacy Technicians:
This continuing education (CE) activity meets the requirements of all state boards of pharmacy for approved continuing education hours. CE credit is automatically reported to CPE Monitor.
CE activities for Nurse Practitioners and Clinical Nurse Specialists:
This continuing education activity meets the requirements of:
The American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC) for formally approved continuing education (CE) hours, and CE hours of pharmacotherapeutics.
The American Academy of Nurse Practitioners Certification Program (AANPCP) for acceptable, accredited CE.
This is a pharmacotherapeutics/pharmacology CE activity.
Continuing Education Network, Inc. is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education as a provider of continuing pharmacy education.
Requirements for CE Credit
- Identify the main active constituents of cannabis and the physiologic processes that these may affect.
- List common conditions for which medical marijuana is used and the current supporting evidence (if any).
- Describe the acute effects and long-term risk of cannabis, and its effect on the reward pathway of the brain.
- Review various dosing methods for medical marijuana and the pharmacokinetic differences among them.
Kari Franson, Pharm.D., Ph.D, BCPP
Brief Bio : Kari Franson, Pharm.D., Ph.D, BCPP is the Associate Dean for Professional Education, Department of Clinical Pharmacy at Skaggs School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences, University of Colorado. She has guided national and international professional, legislative, media and commercial groups on the wise study and use of cannabis.
Disclosure : Dr. Franson reports no financial relationship with the manufacturer(s) or provider(s) of any commercial product(s) or service(s) that appear in this issue.