Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), and other similar disorders, is a qualifying condition for medical marijuana treatment. PTSD can occur following the experience or witnessing of life-threatening, traumatic, or terrifying events that cause intense fear, helplessness, or physical harm such as sexual or physical assault, unexpected death of a loved one, a motor vehicle accident, war, or natural disaster. Family members of victims, emergency responders, and rescue workers can also develop PTSD.
PTSD causes extreme side effects with many individuals experiencing severe nightmares, flashbacks, anxiety, hyper-startle responses, loss of interest, and unfortunately, are often suicidal. Numerous military veterans with PTSD are consistently dealing with issues related to employment, violence, and relationships because of their symptoms. People who suffer from PTSD have been known to relive traumatic events through flashbacks causing them to have difficulty sleeping as well as feeling detached and estranged from loved ones, which can lead to permanent physical and mental disabilities.
The US Veterans Administration estimates between 11-20% of military personnel who served in the recent wars of Afghanistan and Iraq have PTSD. In addition, about 7.7 million Americans overall suffer from this disorder.
PTSD Symptoms & Complications:
• Difficulty functioning and performing daily tasks
• High rates of unemployment
• Increased incidence of separation and divorce
• Self abuse
• Severe anxiety
• Termination of employment
• Substance abuse
PTSD and other like disorders is a qualifying condition for medical marijuana.
Medical marijuana is made up of Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and Cannabidiol (CBD). The CBD is known to bind to receptors and is thought to regenerate cells and brain function, while THC helps to relax and alleviate the physical symptoms of apprehension. This synergistic effect means the ratios of THC and CBD can be manipulated for the patient’s benefit.
PTSD & Cannabis Research
Medical cannabis to treat PTSD has gained national attention in recent years. In 2014, the Clinical Drug Investigator journal detailed a pilot study on medical marijuana lead by a team of researchers and Israeli scientists. The research consisted of the administration of oral dosages of cannabis to patients with severe PTSD. It found that cannabis helped alleviate the patient’s hyper-arousal state, and their increased psychological and physiological tensions, marked by the effects of reduced rigidity and conflict, including a reduced pain tolerance, anxiety, exaggerated startle responses, insomnia, fatigue, and the accentuation of personality traits. Cannabis also provided patients with the ability to alleviate their sleep disorders, which is a prevalent issue for many patients suffering from PTSD.
A second study out of Israel in 2014 outlined in the Journal of Neuro-Psychopharmacology tested the outcomes of people with PTSD that were injected with THC and did not experience new PTSD like symptoms after the injection. The remainder of the researchers concluded that their findings were a significant step in the quest for scientific evidence supporting the use of cannabinoids for PTSD. Dr. Irit Akriun, a psychologist at the University in Haifa, stated, “the findings of our study suggest that the connectivity within the brain for circuit changes, feeling trauma, and administration of cannabinoids, prevents changes from happening.” This study contributed to future trials in humans reporting possible ways to prevent the development of PTSD and anxiety disorders in response to traumatic events.
In the United States in 2014, a study designed to evaluate treatment for military veterans who suffer from PTSD provided five different potencies of smoked cannabis for the treatment of PTSD symptoms. The approval of the study was a significant shift in US policy.
Dr. Sisley, a leading PTSD researcher said, “PTSD is such a complex syndrome. It’s also depression and anxiety and increased startle responses. This whole array of symptoms is not easily managed by one or two drugs and many times requires 4 to 5 drugs.”
Dr. Sisley also pointed out that more than 22 US military veterans are dying daily from suicides. Based on her experience with patients affected by PTSD, Dr. Sisley believes medical marijuana provides a unique opportunity for managing the disorder.
Dr. Sisley further explained, “the truth is that cannabis can treat the whole spectrum of PTSD symptoms with this one medication.” She further explains, “The proof is in the clinical response. We are seeing patients who are able to walk away from a lot of their psychotic medications and their opioids and simply manage their symptoms with one drug—marijuana.”
Because medical marijuana is strictly regulated, there are multiple guidelines and protocols that certified medical marijuana physicians must adhere to when prescribing cannabis.
Dr. Nicholas Angelastro of MAXhealth has a great deal of experience in diagnosing and deciphering the need for THC and CBD in his practice, and their staff is able to help you navigate the registration
protocol to get you approved for a medical marijuana card both ethically and promptly.
Dr. Angelastro explains, “there is a great deal of uncertainty surrounding not only the legality of medicinal cannabis in Florida but also how it may be used safely within a well-supervised routine of medical care. We hope to begin the process of demystifying medicinal cannabis.”
To find out more, and to schedule your appointment, please call (941) 966-4949, or visit their website at mymaxdoc.com.
8620 S Tamiami Trail, Sarasota, FL 34238
The Worlds Most Misunderstood Plant, Friedland, Page 208-210