Navigation Links
Medicinal cannabis review highlights dilemmas facing health care professionals
Date:9/2/2010

Nurses have a responsibility to respect and support patients who use cannabis for medicinal purposes, but must stay within the law and follow professional guidance at all times, according to a research review in the September issue of the Journal of Clinical Nursing.

Dr Anita Green and Dr Kay De-Vries studied more than 50 published papers, together with professional and Government guidance documents, official reports and media coverage, from 1996 to 2009.

They point out that the fact that the cannabis is usually obtained illegally can have consequences for those who choose to use it for its medicinal value and create real dilemmas for the nurses and other healthcare professionals who care for them. For example, it is vital that any drug use is recorded on the patient's medical records for their own safety, but many patients may be unhappy for that to happen.

"Nurses are increasingly likely to deal with patients using medicinal cannabis and it is important that they put their personal views to one side and deal with the health consequences of that drug use" says Dr Green, a Nurse Consultant for the Sussex Partnership NHS Foundation Trust and Visiting Fellow at the University of Brighton.

"The literature on the medicinal use of cannabis repeatedly refers to changes that could improve people's quality of life, like improved sleep, a better appetite and reduced depression, and these perceived benefits have led to greater usage.

"However, it also states that far more research is needed and it is very important that patients are fully aware of the legal consequences of taking cannabis, together with the physical and psychological effects it may have on them.

"Nurses and other healthcare professionals need to be well informed about the medicinal effects of cannabis and how this can interact with other medication the patient is being prescribed. It is also vital that the patient's cannabis use is accurately documented in their records and that other professionals, such as pharmacists, doctors and substance misuse teams are brought in to provide advice, with their permission."

Cannabis, which has been widely used as a herbal remedy since ancient times, was brought to Western Europe at the beginning of the 19th century by Napoleonic soldiers who had been fighting in North Africa.

Its medicinal use was advocated in European and American medical articles as far back as 1849, but was banned in the UK in 1928 after UK delegates at an international opium conference were persuaded that cannabis caused insanity.

"Our review shows that the general view of integrating cannabis derivative medications into mainstream medical use remains extremely cautious" says Dr Green. "Most of the research we studied indicated that there was a need for more clinical trials examining the optimal administration routes and dosing regimes.

"It is repeatedly pointed out in the literature that the development of cannabis and isolated synthetic cannaboids for medicinal purposes is still in its infancy and has a long way to go.

"The aim of our study was to review the literature and to raise awareness of the questions and dilemmas facing the medical profession, specifically nurses, when it comes to caring for patients who use cannabis for medicinal reasons.

"We hope that the review - which looked at the research published into the pharmacological qualities of cannabis and its use in palliative care, for example cancer, multiple sclerosis and motor neurone disease - will stimulate further debate.

"In the meantime, it is vital that nurses and other healthcare professionals act within the law and follow the guidance laid down by their professional organisations."

The authors say that the review highlights the real dilemmas created for the medical profession by the medicinal use of cannabis.

"Nurses have a caring responsibility to maximise their patients' quality of life, but should they also be reminding them that the medicinal use of cannabis remains illegal?" asks Dr Green. "Or should they respect the patient's right to take the drug and just make sure that it does not conflict with any other treatment, such as prescribed medication?

"It is clear that further debate is essential and that nurses need ongoing support and guidance to help them tackle these thorny dilemmas and provide the best healthcare they can for their patients without compromising their professional integrity."


'/>"/>

Contact: Annette Whibley
wizard.media@virgin.net
Wiley-Blackwell
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. Pfizer joins open-access medicinal chemistry public-private collaboration
2. St. Johns wort collection mined for its medicinal value
3. Research demonstrates benefits of medical cannabis as a treatment for chronic pain
4. Smoked cannabis reduces chronic pain
5. Cannabis Medical Solutions Announces Plan to Franchise Ownership of Medical Marijuana Dispensaries in California
6. MarijuanaDoctors.com Announces Weed Team Contest Winner, Adds Additional Trip to the Cannabis Cup in Amsterdam
7. Close Ties With Others Might Lengthen Life, Review Finds
8. Pediatric clinical studies appear prone to bias, Hopkins review shows
9. FDA Reviewer Questions Results of Key Avandia Trial
10. ICU Deaths More Likely on Weekends, Review Reveals
11. Diabetes Drug Avandia Ups Heart Risk, Reviews Conclude
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:5/26/2017)... ... , ... Amir Qureshi, MD is the first physician in Arkansas to implant ... The Nuvectra™ Algovita SCS System has been FDA approved as a treatment option for ... to introduce the most powerful SCS system and the only stretchable lead on the ...
(Date:5/26/2017)... ... May 26, 2017 , ... A new analysis of community health data ... are located in the Midwest. With the average cost of healthcare rising and the ... with both the quality and affordability of where they live. An annual 2017 report ...
(Date:5/26/2017)... ... May 26, 2017 , ... via seating is proud to ... task chair specifically designed for clinical areas. Genie Copper Mesh is a crossover ... Cupron® to provide customers with a game changing chair that is affordably priced,” ...
(Date:5/26/2017)... ... ... After raising nearly $30,000 on Kickstarter , about three-times its original campaign ... crowdfunding price on Indiegogo . , “Along with creating an anti-stress gadget to ... fidget toy to the market that was made of superior quality and wouldn’t break ...
(Date:5/26/2017)... (PRWEB) , ... May 26, 2017 , ... Silver Birch ... community, which is located on more than four acres of land at 5620 Sohl ... , The 103,000 square-foot building includes 125 studio and one-bedroom apartments. Each of ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:5/6/2017)... , May 5, 2017   Provista , a proven ... than 200,000 customers, today announced Jim Cunniff as ... of executive and business experience to Provista, including most recently ... in California . He assumed his new ... is a great fit for Provista," says Jody Hatcher ...
(Date:5/4/2017)... Tenn. , May 4, 2017  A ... Infection Control, Ultraviolet-C light as a ... Tru-D SmartUVC,s ability to reduce bioburden on anesthesia ... bioburden reduction on high-touch, complex medical equipment surfaces ... surgical infections. "This study further validates ...
(Date:5/4/2017)... May 4, 2017  A new tight-tolerance microextrusion ... other highly-engineered materials, is being launched by Natvar, ... been developed in recent years to service a ... surgical applications. More expensive materials such as glass ... tubing due to their ability to consistently hold ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: