Cannabis as an addiction treatment
Play • 47 min

When Dr. Joseph Morgan worked in addiction medicine, his clinic wouldn’t even admit patients if their primary substance was cannabis. Years later, he developed a treatment protocol to treat opioid addicts with cannabis.

“CBD will reduce cravings, whether it's for cigarettes, whether it's for heroin or cocaine. THC has impacts on the endogenous opioid system to get the body to release its own opioids,” Dr. Morgan said in an interview on The Cannabis Enigma podcast. “There's a lot of benefits for using cannabis and THC to treat opioid addiction.”

Dr. Morgan has brought cannabis research to a host of unexpected and fascinating areas — including as a possible treatment for chemical warfare exposure. He also found a way to conduct cannabis research that bypasses the impossible restrictions imposed by federal cannabis prohibition in the United States.

“Delta-9-THC, the main psychoactive component is actually legal, if it is synthetic,” he explained. Using legal versions of the chemical components of cannabis, he reconstructs the plant’s active ingredients in order to study its effects in rodents — and himself.

“I also had it prescribed to me as compound pharmacy, starting with dronabinol. The pharmacist wanted to see all the certificates of analysis, and I gave him the original stock bottles...and he said he would be able to do that. And so, I have basically a legal cannabis mimic prescribed to me as a liquid.”

Dr. Morgan also explained how one of more notorious side effects of cannabis can actually be a positive aspect for some medical patients.

“Short-term memory loss is a negative property when you're having a conversation — you forget what you're talking about — but when it helps you to forget about pain, forget about thinking about pain, and especially in the setting of endometriosis, it's a very positive property,” he said.

Dr. Joseph Morgan will be speaking at the CannX Conference on October 26-28, 2020.

In the second segment of the episode, Associate Policy Coordinator of Americans for Safe Access, Andrew Coon, discusses the hurdles pediatric cannabis patients and their families face in schools. With so many states declaring the areas around schools “drug free zones,” it makes it very difficult for pediatric cannabis patients to administer their medicine during school hours — a problem that most other medications do not pose.

Edited and mixed by Michael Schaeffer Omer-Man. Produced by Michael Schaeffer Omer-Man and Matan Weil. Music by Desca. The Cannabis Enigma podcast is a co-production of The Cannigma and Americans for Safe Access.

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